RealTime IT News

Comcast, Disney Patch Differences

Despite early-year friction with Disney, Comcast has inked a deal to distribute the company's content to high-speed Internet subscribers.

Disney's streaming ABC News reports, and shows such as "Nightline" and "20/20," will be available to Comcast's 5.7 million broadband customers at no additional cost just in time for the national political conventions.

In addition, content from Disney Connection, a site designed for kids between the ages of three and 11, will be used to support the launch of Comcast's Online Kids Channel later this year. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed and spokespeople for the companies could not immediately be reached.

In a statement, Steve Wadsworth, president of Walt Disney Internet Group, said, "With the rapid growth in broadband to the home, families are now enjoying appropriate rich-media content, and we are pleased to be working with Comcast to answer this need."

Forty percent of Comcast High-Speed Internet households include kids, Comcast said. A new child-focused offering is a way to give customers something that will appeal to them and that they can't find through other ISPs.

"Our agreement with Disney marks one of the most comprehensive broadband agreements in our industry to date," Greg Butz, senior vice president of marketing and business development for Comcast's online business said in a statement. "The power of combining best-in-class content with built-for-broadband applications cannot be underestimated."

In February, Disney rebuffed Comcast's hostile takeover attempt.

It wasn't that the entertainment and media giant didn't see intriguing possibilities in distributing its content through the cable and broadband giant's networks. Rather, it didn't think the offer (which worked out to about $46 billion) was enough for the company's marquee name and assets. Two months later, Comcast CEO Brian Roberts, who is known as a disciplined negotiator, withdrew the offer.

Comcast maintained that a marriage would have created "one of the world's leading entertainment and communications companies with an unparalleled distribution platform and an extraordinary portfolio of content assets."

With today's deal, Comcast gets some of what it was looking for back in February.