Comcast Unveils "Xfinity Remote" for iPad, Other IP-Enabled Devices
Comcast Labs has developed a prototype of a Web-based remote control application that it says will extend its interactive programming guide to many IP-enabled devices. Dubbed the Xfinity Remote and designed to work with EBIF-enabled set-top boxes, the prototype was demo'd on an Apple iPad, Wednesday, by Comcast CEO, Brian Roberts, at the NCTA Cable Show.
According to Comcast, the Xfinity Remote will allow users to search for their favorite shows on linear TV and VOD, change the channel on their cable set-top box directly from their iPad or other IP-enabled device, and manage their DVR remotely. It also features social media functionality, the company says, allowing users to chat with friends, invite them to watch programs together, and share recommendations, via integration with existing social networks. In a posting on its corporate blog, Comcast bills the new application as "bring[ing] PC's and a variety of tablets and smartphones into an immersive video experience together with the TV," and as "bring[ing] a new level of personal interactivity to watching TV." The company says that it has "got developers working now to finish and launch this application" and that the app is "part of our strategy to give consumers lots of simple ways to navigate the tens of thousands of choices we now offer on television and online" (note: Comcast just announced that it will expand its VOD movie offering by over 450%--see the article published on itvt.com, May 12th).
A demo video of the Xfinity Remote is embedded above.