Thursday, November 3, 2022

Comcast + Charter + Walmart = Xumo

For years, Xumo has been one of my favorite FAST (free ad-supported television) services. That will change slightly in 2023.

Following an announcement by Comcast and Charter, the joint venture between the two pay TV giants will become known as Xumo.

In case you didn't know, Walmart is in the picture as well, as a retail outlet for devices that will be available. Walmart currently has its own brand of streaming device under its ONN brand. Those run Android/Google TV currently. The ONN devices range from awful (stick) to okay (box). ONN TVs run Roku TV platforms currently. Just how much the new devices from Comcast/Spectrum will impact current ONN devices is not known.

The new name will leverage the Xumo brand, according to a news release.

Along with the naming of the joint venture, Charter and Comcast also announced that Flex, the 4K streaming device Comcast licensed to the joint venture will become Xumo Stream Box and XClass TV will become Xumo TV. Both devices will remain powered by Comcast’s global technology platform and feature an entertainment experience designed to make it easy for consumers to find and enjoy their favorite streaming content through a world-class user interface and voice search. Xumo will go-to-market with its first branded devices in late 2023, distributed by Comcast, Charter and Walmart, with additional distributors to be announced in the future. 

Xumo’s FAST service, which consists of hundreds of linear channels and on demand options from a growing collection of networks and content creators, will be rebranded Xumo Play. Xumo Play will anchor the free content offering on Xumo devices and continue to be available as an app on other streaming platforms.

This will be interesting. I currently utilize Flex (soon to be Xumo Stream Box), since I'm an Xfinity Internet subscriber. I also run the Xumo (soon to be Xumo Play) app on my streaming devices. Just how big of an impact this will be on my Streaming Life isn't clear. Some news names may be it. But I have a feeling that there's more to it than simply adopting new names for current stuff.

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