Comcast offers American Hustle, Sony content for EST gambit
Michelle Clancy | 12-03-2014

Comcast has added yet more content for sale on its Xfinity On Demand digital store, thanks to a deal with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment (SPHE).

The leading US cable MSO continues to beef up its electronic sell-through (EST) proposition as consumers get more comfortable buying non-physical copies of films and TV.

"The Sony Pictures library is a terrific addition to our rapidly expanding offering of hit films and TV shows available for purchase," said Michael Schreiber, senior vice president of content acquisition at Comcast Cable. "The response to the digital store has been encouraging and tells us our customers love the flexibility and ease of purchasing content directly from Xfinity On Demand to watch when and where they want it."

The first title available for purchase will be American Hustle. Additional upcoming titles include the critically-acclaimed TV series Breaking Bad, as well as movies such as Captain Phillips, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2, The Amazing Spiderman and 21 Jump Street.

Comcast became the first cable MSO to offer content for purchase on-demand in late 2013. Its catalogue now includes content from FOX, Lionsgate, NBCUniversal, Sony Pictures and Warner Bros. Customers will be able to purchase movies and television shows and store them in the cloud. The content can then be pulled down to a TV, PC or mobile devices.

ABI Research expects that consumer thirst for EST to continue to grow it increased by 39% last year.

"The pace of change within the video market has been remarkable. The next wave of disruptive services will be national over-the-top services from existing pay-TV market participants, as indicated by Verizon's acquisition of Intel Media and Sony's cloud-TV hopes," said practice director Sam Rosen. "As more digital content becomes available, consumer's perceptions of ownership will change instead of moving from physical media to electronic purchases (EST), video is looking increasingly like music, where consumers access owned and subscribed libraries of content via services rather than personally amassing collections."