Comcast set-top box for cord cutters may double as smart home hub

Comcast is developing products to target its cord-cutting customers, according to a new report. The alleged platform is intended for customers who only have a broadband Internet subscription, though it'll be an uphill battle against established competitors like Roku and Netflix. Comcast's alleged products will include a set-top box.

Comcast's product will include a set-top box and OS similar to the one found on its X1 platform, according to CNBC. This platform will enable users to access aggregated streaming services like YouTube, Netflix, and Prime Video, the report claims, though the service provider hasn't confirmed any of these rumors.

This would be an alternative to the company's X1 platform designed for cable television customers. Broadband-only subscribers will allegedly be able to purchase one of Comcast's set-top boxes and use its own system to access their favorite streaming destinations.

Comcast's platform will reportedly provide direct access to digital movies and TV shows for renting and purchasing, and it's also said that it will prod users toward signing up for the service provider's pay TV plans. As well, the report claims that Comcast envisions its platform as a hub for smart home devices, including connected thermostats and light bulbs.

That would be the primary benefit to the platform, at least based on the report, but it may not be enough to lure in new customers. According to sources speaking with the publication, Comcast will limit the number of video apps made available on this alleged cord-cutting platform, though it hasn't decided where that limit lies yet.

The reasoning is simple: Comcast would end up providing access to competitors' services, such as Sling TV, possibly to the detriment of getting new customers for its own video products. Though keeping those services off its platform may help Comcast earn new customers, it would also make its products less appealing for serious cord-cutters who want maximum access to streaming content.