Report: EA, Comcast close to signing streaming game deal

Game publisher and media company said to be finalizing agreement that will bring titles like FIFA and Madden to X1 TV operating system.

Are games coming to Comcast's X1 service?

According to a report today from Reuters, Electronic Arts and Comcast are close to finalizing a deal that would bring EA-published games to Comcast's X1 TV operating system through cloud-powered streaming. Five separate sources told Reuters that this was the case.

According to Reuters, Comcast and EA have tested such a streaming service for more than two years. Games from the Madden, FIFA, Monopoly, and Plants vs. Zombies franchises were called out as those being available for streaming. The report goes on to say that you'll be able to use a tablet you already own as a controller to play the games, suggesting the games on offer will be smaller, mobile games rather than bigger, console-level titles. The list of available games is reportedly still being hashed out.

Sources told Reuters that Comcast will focus on casual and family games first, before later considering FPS and action games. It will all come down to user preference, the report says.

Comcast has more than 22 million customers in the United States, which would (potentially) make the company a major player in the home gaming space if the deal goes through. An EA representative declined to comment when approached by GameSpot, while we've yet to hear back from a Comcast representative about this reported deal.

Sources told Reuters that EA and Comcast want to make buying games as easy as ordering a pay-per-view movie. "This could create a new distribution model that circumvents console and video-streaming device makers," Reuters points out.

Both EA and Comcast were featured in this year's Worst Company In America poll from consumer affairs blog The Consumerist. After "winning" two years running, EA was knocked out in the first round this year, while Comcast "won" it all, taking home the Golden Poo award.

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @EddieMakuch
Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

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Discussion

73 comments
DirkXXVI
DirkXXVI

I knew EA wasn't serious when they said they wanted to be voted the Best Company in America. If they had any such delusions of grandeur they wouldn't have been foolish enough to make this type of deal right in the middle of the net neutrality fight. A fight where Comcast has emerged as public enemy number 1.

Though this deal doesn't prove EA to be incapable of righting the ship it does indicate that they are still painfully tone deaf.

Hvac0120
Hvac0120

The way I read this is that Comcast doesn't want their cable boxes to become unnecessary boxes that connect to your Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, or Roku. So they are building services to make their box compete with those other streaming boxes and secured a deal with EA to make sure "quality" games will be made available.

Comcast will have to reach further than just EA to make this successful. EA just doesn't have a large enough library to support a service for themselves.

It's an easy win for EA because of the damn-near monopoly Comcast holds as an ISP in the US. All of these customers will be automatically given the equipment needed to access the service. No additional purchase necessary.

Probably not a good idea to run with the X1 branding now that the Xbox One is out on the market. Oh well...

Stepn2myworld
Stepn2myworld

Comcast + EA = Fail.  Online article title in 3-5 years on Yahoo: Comcast and EA Officially Ending Partnership with Failed Streaming Game Service.

While many companies have attempted the "games as a service" model, it consistently failed to gain any traction. The most recent attempt by two heavyweights in their respective mediums, Comcast and Electronic Arts, has been officially shutdown. 


Both companies faced an uphill battle in launching this service while battling the public's perception of them. Both have won The Consumerist Gold Poo Award which is given yearly to the company voted worst in America.


And well, you get the point...

elsmitty
elsmitty

Two demons joining forces

playstationzone
playstationzone

well going to be worst stream service ever by EA Games.

SphinxDemon
SphinxDemon

Wait am I understanding that you don't need a gaming machine to play, just the tv and a controller? Someone help me out

glacius_x
glacius_x

I have X1 service.... "goes back to playing consoles"

Megavideogamer
Megavideogamer

Fair enough Comcast and EA working together to make available streaming service for throwaway causal games. This is not very likely to find success. But EA and Comcast can down down with the ship together.

Orga777
Orga777

Hahahahaha. What kind of unholy union is this?

zintarr
zintarr

My least favorite publisher of games and my shitty crap quality cable provider working together...sounds spiffy!

de-astroturfer
de-astroturfer

This will be great, competition, net neutrality and fair one off pricing are killing our industry EA leading the way to a better future <sarcasm> 

freedomzealot
freedomzealot

Another scam to tighten control over distribution. Dont buy digital games or streaming you are giving these hated monopolies more power by doing so, go buy a psysical copy of the game to support your local business and enjoy owning, rather than just renting a service.

3dmatrixgamer
3dmatrixgamer

Streaming is the future of console gaming  later soon i willbe able to play all PC exclusive titles on my XOne under MS umbrella

saikang
saikang

Its like as if Justin Beiber and Miley Cyrus had a baby together.

Gordaton
Gordaton

Call me crazy, but I actually like this.

PosiTVEMinD355
PosiTVEMinD355

EA and Comcast!?   Are they seriously considering a real life Weyland-Yutani Corp.?

DAOWAce
DAOWAce

Comcast can't even provide reliable internet service, how on earth are they going to offer a game streaming service?

DrKill09
DrKill09

Anyone remember the Sega Channel?

DrKill09
DrKill09

Stream me a new Road Rash, thank you.

spikepigeo
spikepigeo

Comcast and EA... good lord. The only thing this partnership-made-in-hell needs to complete the evil trifecta would be Bank of America. That operation would be so scummy it would put Enron to shame.

atopp399
atopp399

They charge you $100 just to sign up for the x1 platform plus you have to have a triple play account with a useless phone. At least those were the rules last time I checked. Maybe they've changed or are different for new customers but I don't see the value in it. I've read it's very buggy as well.

deth420
deth420

such beautiful comments already. I feel like there isnt anything else to say...i guess ill just throw up another "Pricks!"

bluefox755
bluefox755

Have to use a tablet as a controller? No thanks.

vackillers
vackillers

A Match made in heaven... both are dogshit companies...

Petman8246
Petman8246

Two of some of the most evil companies joining together...and that's on top of one of those companies trying to merge with another one of the most evil companies. May Gaben have mercy on our souls.

ZellyPoof
ZellyPoof

Is this the start of Umbrella?

deadpen
deadpen

Okay, in math if you take -4 x -5 you get a positive 20. In a sentence if you say "I did not, not, buy all of them." then you bought them all. Two negatives make a positive, but in the business world two negatives make a failure.

hardeddie
hardeddie

Confirmed the second coming of Lucifer in digital form.

VegasAceVII
VegasAceVII

HAHAHA, two of the worse companies ever?  No thanks.

kane6911
kane6911

this will be great. sony has ps now, the xbox will better band with and with more and better games. so this way i see this working really well.

lazycomplife
lazycomplife

When one horrible company does things with another horrible company, that's how disgusting things are born.

SickWickinson
SickWickinson

With the recent assault on net neutrality I'm sure we all know where this is going.

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

The Worst Company in America last year and the year before working with the Worst Company in America from this year.


It's just gonna be great, I can tell.

Barighm
Barighm

You guys are surprised? I've been saying this would happen for years now.

mkeezay22
mkeezay22

This probably has the smallest market possible, for one thing many people no longer pay for any kind of TV services, I don't simply because I can watch everything on cable on my PC hooked up to my TV and only pay for internet and my Netflix membership.

And if the games aren't full versions and more like android games you control with your tablet why not just play on the tablet instead of streaming through a cable box and using a tablet as a controller.

DarkSaber2k
DarkSaber2k

"Five separate sources told Reuters that this was the case."

Well, that IS five more sources than eddies articles usually have...

Martyr77
Martyr77

and thus the Apocalypse began..........

Ailurusf
Ailurusf

Heh, after the whole net neutrality ruling last week or so, these news come as a surprise to no-one. Reads like evil corporation 1 makes evil deal with evil corporation 2 to guarantee evil profits. 

bdrtfm
bdrtfm

@3dmatrixgamer That statement makes no sense. If you are streaming content, you don't need a console. You just need a smart TV - which every TV will be eventually  and an internet connection. Or even just a cable box. If streaming is the future as you say then, the future of the console is bleak.