Comcast’s Xfinity X1 to offer front row seat to Rio Olympics
With dozens of sports events and over 6700 hours of Rio coverage, it will be nearly impossible to keep up with everything that goes on in the 2016 Olympics.
That’s why, on Wednesday morning, Comcast CEO Brian L. Roberts presented the Xfinity X1 and its innovative features as a solution to that problem.
The Operating System will have a “Rio Olympics” dashboard, a destination where Xfinity subscribers can enjoy live events from 11 networks, on demand content, and 40 plus live stream channels. Athlete profiles, cloud-based videos, and updated medal counts and statistics will also be featured.
The X1 comes with a voice activated remote control, an integration similar to the iPhone’s Siri where the person uses voice commands to find shows, recommendations, etc.
“It’s a completely immersive Olympics experience,” said Roberts. “You’ll be able to search events by sport, by athlete, or nation. [With this integration], what you want to watch has become easier to find. You no longer need to remember the channel again.”
One of the X1 interface’s most prominent features, however, is the ability to modify its language setting to Spanish.
“[Latinos and Spanish-speakers] will be able to navigate and experience the Olympics in Spanish and follow their country [in the Olympics] and filter all the content to their liking,” said Javier Garcia, Comcast Cable’s Vice President of Multicultural Services.
As viewership of the Olympics is watched differently-- especially with the technological advancements-- the cable giant is partnering with Buzzfeed and Snapchat to ensure that coverage reaches millennials and social media users.
The relationship with the social networking sites will be terrific way for people to connect with athletes, said Chris Satchell, executive vice president and chief product officer at Comcast.
About 40 percent of Comcast customers already have the X1 platform installed in the homes. Satchell hopes the interface stays prevalent past the Olympic games.
“We want to make sure that we could use these components after the Olympics and bring that personalized experience to customers from then onwards to really make other events feel personal,” he said.
This year’s Olympics will NBC’s third time broadcasting the event. Amid setbacks with the dangers of the Zika virus, Roberts said it’s going to be a safe environment for everyone who’s attending.
“I’m not an expert, but I have worked a lot in this. There tends to be a lot of buildup before the Olympics with some negativity about each event. We saw it in Sochi, and we saw it in London,” he said. “My own prediction: it’s going to be a spectacular event.”
The 2016 Rio Olympics will run from August 5 through the 21.