Streampix, a subscription-based multiscreen video service from Comcast that counts Netflix among its competitors, has quietly introduced an option that lets customers download a select number of movies and TV shows and play them back later on mobile devices.
Launched in February 2012, Streampix started out as a streaming-only multiscreen service focused on older movies and past-season TV shows. The recently added download piece allows customers to view a growing batch of titles on smartphones and tablets when they are not within reach of a broadband connection that will support direct streaming.
Although the download option appears on the Streampix app for the iPad as one that will be “Available Soon,” the capability appears to be active. According to the app, users can already download and playback 126 movie titles from the Streampix catalog, including Syriana, Before Sunset, A Mighty Wind, Disclosure, Roger & Me, One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, Doctor Zhivago, Ben Hur, and Casablanca.
Episodic TV titles eligible for downloading via Streampix early on is much more limited, with only six series available via that option: Mona The Vampire, Old MacDonald’s Sing-A-Long Farm, Paranormal Challenge, The Legend of Zelda, The Super Mario Bros Super Show!, and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.
Alias, Army Wives, Desperate Housewives, Friday Night Lights, Grey’s Anatomy, Heroes, Lost, The Good Wife, Parks and Recreation, Battlestar Galactica, and Scrubs are among the dozens of TV series currently offered via Streampix but presently delivered only through streaming.
The number of Streampix titles offered for download should expand. According to the Streampix iPad app, subscribers will be able to “download thousands of hit shows & movies from Streampix to your mobile device & watch them anytime, anywhere – even when you’re offline.”
Comcast officials were not available Monday to provide further comment about when Streampix added the download feature and how rapidly it intends to extend downloading rights to other movies and TV series that are offered via the Streampix catalog.
Xfinity TV Go, Comcast’s authenticated TV Everywhere app, has offered a download option since late 2012, when the app was still known as the Xfinity TV Player.
Comcast sells Streampix as a stand-alone subscription service for $4.99 per month, but also includes it in several premium service bundles, including the MSO's Blast Plus high-speed Internet tier. Comcast has not announced how many customers subscribe to Streampix.