The streaming wars make for strange bedfellows with cable competitors Comcast and Charter announcing that they are bringing their streaming apps together under the Xumo branding.
A press release revealed that the “entire entertainment ecosystem inclusive of streaming devices, content, and a platform for partners to reach audiences at scale.”
Xumo is a free, ad-based streaming founded in 2011 that features several news and entertainment channels for streaming. They were acquired by Comcast in 2020 with the conglomerate announcing that it will shift to their new deal with Charter.
Deadline reports that Xumo president Marcien Jenckes explained, “Since 2011, the Xumo brand has connected with millions of customers across the country, establishing itself as a leader in the free ad-supported TV industry for the innovative ways it delivers content to its users.”
“The new Xumo will bring industry leading streaming and aggregation technology nationwide through its expanding content, product line up, and retailer relationships,” he added.
Xumo’s channel service is similar to Pluto TV which also uses ad-based programming and channels.
“By redeploying the Xumo name for the new venture, the owners answered a question looming over the 2020 acquisition by Comcast, which puzzled many in the industry given the company’s investment in Peacock and the growth of Flex,” Deadline said in a report.
Comcast’s streaming service Flex will be rebranded as Xumo Stream Box with XClass TV being retitled Xumo TV. Xumo will also be renamed Xumo Play and will now have a device similar to a Roku or Amazon Firestick available in retail stores in 2023.
“Xumo’s own free streaming service will continue to exist, but under the new name Xumo Play. Customers will be able to keep watching free content on Xumo devices and through a standalone app,” CNET notes.
Xumo currently features over 200 entertainment, news, and sports channels. The new devices will be voice-activated and will be able to stream in 4K.