In a separate transaction, Fox is selling Disney the rest of Sky as part of a $71.3 billion deal announced earlier this year.
Comcast expects Disney will let go of its 39 percent stake, giving CEO Brian Roberts complete ownership of the TV distributor and owner of content, including Premier League rights, according to people familiar with the matter.
Comcast has outbid Twenty-First Century Fox for the UK’s Sky, a final step in what’s been a years-long takeover battle between the two media conglomerates.
The acquisition of Sky, which has 23 million subscribers in the UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria and Italy, will give Comcast a much stronger foothold in the international market and much-needed ammo to compete with Amazon and Netflix in the streaming wars.
Both companies upped their offers for Sky at the settlement auction Saturday, with Comcast offering £17.28 per Sky ordinary share and Fox offering £15.67 per share.
A cable company that competes against Comcast says it was forced "to pay a punitive ransom totaling nearly $3.5 million" in order to keep airing Comcast-owned TV programming.
Wave Broadband, which has about 455,000 customers in Washington, Oregon, and California, filed a complaint against Comcast-owned networks with the Federal Communications Commission in December.
Demands from Comcast-owned Regional Sports Networks (RSNs) "had the effect of withholding must-have regional sports programming from the largest cable competitor to Comcast Cable on the West Coast unless Wave agreed to pay a punitive ransom totaling nearly $3.5 million," Wave wrote yesterday.
"The Comcast RSNs do not deny their conduct and barely attempt to defend it; instead they primarily rely on procedural defenses," Wave wrote.
The Series A round was led by ClearSky Security, Comcast Ventures and the SAP.iO Fund.
BigID’s main product is geared toward enterprises that want a reliable solution for protecting and managing the privacy of personal data.
The company and its investors are betting that its services will appeal to enterprises that will need to comply with the upcoming General Data Protection Regulation, which comes into force in EU countries in May. “On the eve of GDPR and in the midst of endless mega breaches, we’re in a new era of personal data rights,” said Jay Leek, managing director at Clearsky Security, who has joined BigID’s board of directors.
This dance of dysfunction has been particularly interesting in Colorado, however.
Late last year in Fort Collins, for example, 57.15% of locals voted to open the door to community-run broadband despite Comcast and Centurylink spending nearly $1 million on misleading ads claiming the plan would cause the city to fall into disrepair.
"Last night's three unanimous votes begin the process of building our city's own broadband network," Glen Akins, a resident who helped lead the pro-municipal broadband campaign, told Ars today.
Comcast on Wednesday announced it will offer free home automation capabilities to its 15 million Xfinity customers in a quest to become the leading platform to integrate smart home technologies and manage your home.
Comcast reportedly fired about 500 salespeople shortly before Christmas, despite claiming that the company would create thousands of new jobs in exchange for a big tax cut.
Comcast apparently tried to keep the firings secret while it lobbied for the tax cut that was eventually passed into law by the Republican-controlled Congress and signed by President Trump in late December.
The former employee who talked to the Inquirer "could not be identified because of a nondisclosure agreement as part of a severance package," the article said.
Ars asked Comcast today if all 500 fired employees had to sign those nondisclosure agreements, but we didn't receive an answer.
That includes the "Broadcast TV fee," which is simply a part of the cost of doing business (paying for content) buried below the line, letting Comcast advertise one rate -- then sock consumers with another price entirely once the bill comes due.
That fee, which Comcast has insisted is just its way of "being transparent," was just $1.50 when introduced in 2013 -- and will be bumped to $8 per month in the new year...
The original complaint found that Comcast reps repeatedly sold the plan as being "comprehensive," covering all service calls, including those related to inside wiring, customer-owned equipment connected to Comcast services and "on-site education about products."
But now that the FCC's attack on net neutrality is getting media attention due to a massive public backlash, the NAACP has issued a statement proclaiming that the group is "deeply disappointed" with the FCC's decision to repeal rules.
“The internet fuels economic opportunity, civic engagement, and social action.
Yesterday's repeal of net neutrality rules isn't the only good news Comcast is getting these days.
Smaller cable companies that compete against Comcast are worried that Comcast will raise the price for carrying "must-have" programming such as regional sports networks, NBC's local TV stations, and NBC's national programming.
The FCC should impose new rules to essentially replace the arbitration conditions that expire in January, cable company RCN told the Federal Communications Commission in a filing this week.
"Because the rationale supporting harm to competition and consumers in the Comcast-NBCU Order continues, an 'unleashed' Comcast-NBCU is certain to wreak havoc in the market, undermining rival distributors and harming consumers throughout the country," RCN wrote.
Comcast has promised before that it does not and will not engage in paid prioritization, and today the company has reiterated that stance — after being called out for having apparently weakened it over the last year.
Over the last few years, Comcast’s Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer David Cohen has written several times on the topic of net neutrality.
No paid prioritization – We agree, and that is our practice… We don’t prioritize Internet traffic or have paid fast lanes, and have no plans to do so.
His target? A one-star review containing zero words written by someone using the name "Richard Hill." Beale claimed this single review, hosted by Google, had irrevocably damaged his livelihood.
When we first covered the lawsuit, Beale's lawyer made what seemed to be a completely ignorant statement in regards to Beale's attempt to force Google to strip the anonymity from masked one-star reviewer "Richard Hill."
Beale's attorney, Steven Abrams of Mount Pleasant, said he has handled several similar cases, and companies like Google, AT&T, Comcast and Verizon typically hand over identifying information of anonymous users.
The court notes it's not at the point where it can discuss the case on its merits -- not without a defendant being served and given a chance to respond.
If you’re scared of a future America without net neutrality, I want to terrify you.
After spending twelve years running a company that helps millions of people to break through the barriers of censorship imposed by oppressive governments, I am quite familiar with the ramifications of such repressions.
As a lucky American, it’s easy to say “this can’t happen here,” which is a reasonable, human gesture — we live under a democracy, but said democracy also has polarized politics and a totally different lobbying system to the rest of the world.
Out of the top 50 last year, the top 10 included AT&T, spending $16.3 million, and Comcast (the largest cable provider in America and owner of NBCUniversal) ranked 12th, spending $14.3 million.
"...the Commission also should bear in mind that a more flexible approach to prioritization may be warranted and may be beneficial to the public.
You'll be equally shocked to learn that this has nothing to do with helping the sick -- and everything to do with making more money.
You'd think, as FCC Boss so immensely familiar with the rules he's so eager to dismantle, that Ajit Pai would realize that the claim that net neutrality hurts the sick is a dated and grotesque bit of scare mongering.
Pai's agency is already facing numerous lawsuits for refusing to disclose conversations with ISP lobbyists about the plan to kill net neutrality, refusing to disclose net neutrality complaints filed with the agency, refusing to be transparent about a DDoS attack the FCC apparently concocted to downplay the "John Oliver effect," and for ignoring FOIA requests related to its failure to police website comment fraud during the public comment period.
You'll recall that time and time again, Pai and friends have tried to claim that net neutrality isn't a real problem, and that the harms created by letting giants like AT&T and Comcast run roughshod over an uncompetitive broadband sector are largely hallucinated.
Initially the FCC spent much of this year stalling in the release of the complaints, insisting that making them public would be too "burdensome" for agency staff.
Comcast today is rolling out its first ever completely fully homegrown WiFi device, the xFi Advanced Gateway, capable of achieving gigabit speeds and up.
The device, first unveiled earlier this year, costs the same as any other Comcast router, $10 per month, but the company says its the most powerful and sleekest WiFi device yet.
“We all live and die by WiFi, and as we are moving into a world where people have got five, 10 and then 20, then 40 or more connected devices, we have to have great connectivity, great coverage, great control,” Comcast’s Chief Product Officer Chris Satchell told GeekWire in an interview.
The Advanced Gateway is available in all markets where it has gigabit speeds, and that includes Seattle.