Comcast Lets X1 Subs Pre-Order New Movies

Part of Latest Wave of New Features for X1 Platform
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Comcast has launched another wave of updates and new features for its IP-capable X1 platform, including an addition to the Xfinity Digital Store that lets customers pre-order some movies while they are still in theaters.

That option, for example, now lets customers pre-order the new Minions movie (from corporate cousin Universal) as it hits theaters today.  Customers who pre-order it will see the title “automatically show up in your library as soon as it is made available for digital purchasing,” Peter Nush, vice president, product management for Comcast Cable, explained in this blog post. Some new release purchases will provide extra content, including behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with cast members, he said.

In addition to movie pre-orders, here are the other latest enhancements to X1:

-Language indicators in the guide that distinguish between different versions, and help users find content in different languages. The languages included in this update are Spanish (ESP), French (FRA), Italian (ITA), Korean (KOR), Portuguese (POR), and Russian (RUS).

-Updated Video Toolbar: Multilingual and accessibility customers can now quickly and easily turn SAP and video descriptions on and off via the video toolbar without having to leave a program or navigate the settings menu.

-My Account Access from Settings:  As part of Comcast’s efforts to integrate customer self-service features into the X1 guide, My Account information, which lets customers pull up billing info, details about coming appointments, are now accessible to all X1 customers via the settings menu. Comcast also announced this week that it’s testing “Co-Pilot,” a feature for X1 that enables a customer care rep or technician take control of a user’s screen – after receiving a verification code – and walks them through the process of solving a service issue.

Based on the MSO’s earlier estimation that it is deploying between 15,000 to  20,000 X1 boxes per day, Comcast should have about 10 million deployed by now (last fall, the MSO announced it had shipped 5 million X1 boxes).

Shaw Communications and Cox Communications are testing or plan to test X1, but have not yet announced if they will license and adopt the platform on a commercial basis.