Comcast Corporation (CMCSA)  

​Comcast to launch mobile service using Verizon’s network, integrate Netflix in cable box

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Robert Williams | FlashRatings | Tuesday, September 20, 2016 3:30 PM EDT
Cable television and internet giant Comcast Corporation (CMCSA) plans to introduce its first mobile service in partnership with Verizon Wireless (VZ), CEO Brian Roberts told reporters today at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference.

Comcast plans to integrate Wi-Fi hotspots with Verizon’s cellular network to create a hybrid service that is slated for launch by mid-2017. 

The plan would make Comcast the first cable MVNO —or mobile virtual network operator— a model in which companies purchase signal from other wireless carriers then resell it under their own brand.

The service leans on a contract signed between Comcast in Verizon in 2011. With the wireless and telecom businesses having evolved substantially since that time, it’s unclear whether the Verizon camp is still satisfied with the partnership. 

In a statement to Endgadget, Verizon’s chief financial officer Fran Shammo said, “We have an existing MVNO agreement and we were informed that they are going to execute on that agreement and the agreement is the agreement.”

CEO Roberts also announced today that users of Comcast’s new X1 cable box would integrate Netflix (NFLX) and is working with other online streaming services to cut similar deals. 

Netflix and Comcast have come into conflict in recent years, notably over net neutrality, with the online streaming service saying it felt forced to pay for access to Comcast’s internet “fast lane.”