Comcast said video customers watched a record 77 million-plus hours during the operator’s latest “Watchathon Week,” an annual free VOD binge-fest that has been used to drive up interest in TV series ahead of their season premieres.
Comcast said this year’s Watchathon, which took place April 3-9 and included shows from Netflix for the first time, saw viewing rise 42% year-on-year from the 54 million hours watched in 2013, and it eclipsed the then-record 71 million hours viewed during the 2016 Watchathon Week across all platforms.
The operator, which recently relaunched /rebranded its authenticated app, now called Xfinity Stream, said mobile viewing during this year’s Watchathon rose to 4.5 million hours, more than triple the 1.5 million hours viewed during the MSO’s first Watchathon in 2013.
More than 50 networks participated in this year’s Watchathon, the fifth annual for Comcast, up from just 20 that were involved in the first one, Andy Hunter, VP of programming at Comcast, noted in this blog post. He added the number of “current season stacked shows” offered during the week has also grown from 53 to 350.
With the help of Netflix on X1, this year’s Watchathon offered ten times more complete series – from 16 in 2013 to 161 in 2017, Hunter said.