Comcast Media Center Weighs VOD, HD Offerings


Executives at Comcast Corp.’s Comcast Media Center are in discussions with clients of Headend in the Sky to determine whether to add HDTV programming, video-on-demand or both to 150 program services HITS already delivers.

Gary Traver, senior vice president and chief operating officer of the Media Center, said there’s no consensus yet among HITS’ 300 cable customers over future services, but the company expects to make some announcement by the end of the summer.

Traver and other executives stressed that HITS will continue to operate as the anchor of the affiliate-network-services division of the center, located in Littleton, Colo.

Rumors that HITS would shut down circulated following the absorption of AT&T Broadband into Comcast -- speculation officials attributed to merger anxiety.

“We’re actually very excited about what we think we can offer,” Traver said.

The Littleton complex is the center for program uplinking for Comcast and its customers now that the MSO has converted a similar AT&T legacy facility in Los Angeles into the headquarters and production facility for its video-game network, G4.

Comcast announced last week that the center has created a national platform to encode and deliver VOD content, both for its systems and those of other MSOs. Programming will be aggregated and encoded at the Littleton facility.

The national service can deliver programming to subscribers’ homes within hours of acquisition, Comcast executives said.