Comcast’s Netflix Deal Could Open a New Front in Net Neutrality War

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Watching Netflix using Comcast is about to get a little easier. The longtime rivals recently confirmed that Comcast’s X1 interactive television box will offer Netflix, obviating the need for a smart TV or third-party device like a Roku or Chromecast. The two companies said little more than the combination arrives later in 2016 and it remains to be seen whether you’ll pay a separate fee to use Netflix. The answer almost certainly is yes. The bigger question is whether you’ll also need Comcast Internet service to watch Netflix over X1—and, if so, whether watching Netflix will eat into your Internet data plan.

Comcast did not respond to request for comment, but content viewed via X1 doesn’t typically count as data because it’s considered television. Making Netflix part of its television service would be great for customers who use Comcast’s television service and worry about exceeding the one terabyte threshold the company is testing in places. But such an arrangement would raise net neutrality questions, since it could put Comcast in the position of choosing sides in the streaming video market.


Comcast’s Netflix Deal Could Open a New Front in Net Neutrality War