It seems Comcast is in the process of readying a new on-demand service called Hitz.
The details on the service remain light although a new report points to a trademark listing and confirmation from a spokesperson for its existence.
According to the report, Hitz is designed to be a Cinemax replacement and will be a commercial-free service.
Apparently Cinemax will not be completely leaving the Comcast experience, at least not at first, as it will remain available as a premium add-on, as well as accessible to Comcast customers as a direct-to-consumer option, but the clear suggestion is Comcast will look to push its Xfinity customers towards Hitz.
Again, substance on the actual service is thin but it would seem the plan is to make a play for movies and not just those related to NBCUniversal, but from many different studios.
According to the reports, the service will offer in excess of 200 movies.
The trademark, filed by Comcast on April 30, 2019, lists just about every genre you can think of and also actively states this is a video-on-demand service that provides “downloadable films and movies.”
As is to be expected with a filing such as this, the listing does also suggest the service will be accessible by a wide range of devices, including smartphones.
Cinemax is part of the WarnerMedia stable and it seems likely this is meant as a way for Comcast to become more independent in the way it offers content to its customers.
This is a common trend in TV land right now with multiple studios, providers and everyone in between looking at ways in which they can deliver content more directly to consumers.
WarnerMedia, for example is also in the process of readying its own dedicated streaming service (due for release later in the year), and this along with the new streaming service from Disney will join the ever-growing list of options now afforded to consumers.
While it might seem like another streaming service is one too many, Comcast has approached the market a little differently to the others as while many companies and brands seem keen on making their services available to as many people as possible, Comcast seems to be looking for ways to keep its existing customers from flying the coop.
This was recently seen with the launch of the new Xfinity Flex Service which also comes with its own set-top box and is designed to be a streaming option for Xfinity customers to switch to. This box gives those customers access to sought-after third-party streaming services but keeps the customers within Comcast's reach, and even has the potential to act as a tool for those customers to upgrade their subscription if wanted.
It would seem Hitz is likely to be another of these measures that will look to keep Comcast customers as Comcast customers, while also likely lessening its dependence on other services, such as Cinemax.
At present, there's still no firm word on how much Hitz will cost, but the mentioned spokesperson confirmed those details will be announced when the service is closer to launch - apparently, that's in July.