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X1 + YouTube?

Comcast announced today that it landed its first customer in Connecticut for Xfinity Communities, a program that’s been specially tailored to provide services to apartment buildings, healthcare facilities, and some swanky single-family home communities. 

We haven’t mentioned Xfinity Communities, an offering for property owners, developers and leasing agents, for a while, so thought I should at least visit the site to poke around a bit and reset my bearings on what it’s all about.  

There’s a marketing video there that gets into the bells and whistles of the offering – broadband, WiFi, voice, the IP-capable X1 video platform…the usual stuff one would expect. Then it got a bit more interesting at the 1:49 mark, when the reel gets a bit deeper into X1, and shows off the platform’s apps capabilities – weather and traffic widgets, Facebook, Pandora, photo sharing…YouTube.

Wait, what? YouTube? What’s that doing there?  Check it out for yourself:

I checked with Comcast about it and a spokesman said it’s just a marketing video and there’s nothing to announce with respect to YouTube being integrated with X1. 

So…just chalk it up to an observation for now. And to be fair, this particular promo video was uploaded (to YouTube, of course!) about ten months ago, so it’s pretty long in the tooth when it comes to Internet time.  But still one has to wonder – how did that get through? Seems strange to think that Comcast went through the trouble of showing YouTube on X1, even in a marketing promo, just for giggles.

And just to keep the fun going, here’s another promotional video, this one just for X1. Hey, look, at the 3:36 mark…if you squint hard enough it looks like we’ve got another YouTube sighting on X1, flitting about far off in the background. This one was uploaded in February…so still pretty ancient.

So it could be nothing…or maybe something (way to go out on a ledge, right?).  We’ll see if there's some fire to this smoke.  

But part of me wants to believe that YouTube will be coming to X1 eventually. That would be a huge statement for the OTT-TV capabilities for X1…and to the market. Comcast working with YouTube? Surely, that's crazy talk. 

For now, X1’s Internet-delivered apps are pretty sparse – Watchable (Comcast’s own ad-supported Web video offering with sanctioned content partners), Xfinity Games Powered by EA, Xfinity  Share, and tie ins with Pandora, Facebook, Flickr, and Instagram. Other apps, such as X1 Sports Extras, is “native” to the X1 guide, meaning it comes in via Comcast’s managed IP network, not via a public Internet connection.

So, for now, there’s nothing more to see here. Move along.