Disney is expected to add a cash offering to its all-stock bid for 21st Century Fox assets in an effort to beat Comcast's competing bid, sources say. The company's current bid is valued at around $55.5 billion, while Comcast has offered $65 billion in cash for the assets, which include Fox's movie studios, several cable networks and stakes in Hulu and Sky.
Roku has plans to create and launch a video subscription marketplace similar to Amazon Channels, sources say. The service would allow Roku users to sign up for and access subscription video services without having to download individual apps.
Comcast has announced that it will be launching its X1 for Hospitality service at the Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia at Comcast Center this winter. Using the service, hotel guests will be able to enjoy hundreds of channels, thousands of on-demand titles, DVR and voice control navigation.
Showtime has announced that it will be launching its first weekly late-night talk show next year. The show will feature Desus Nice and The Kid Mero and will center on topics including pop culture, music, sports and politics.
Discovery has announced a new advertising offering that will put brands in front of the audiences of the network's most in-demand series. Discovery Premiere offers exclusive advertising across 30 of the network's most-watched programs.
Comcast's purchase of 21st Century Fox assets could result in a tax bill for Fox's Murdoch family totaling more than $4 billion, whereas an all-stock deal with Disney would be tax-free, tax experts say. Fox has scheduled a board meeting Wednesday to further discuss whether to move forward with Comcast's $65 billion bid.
AT&T is renaming Time Warner to WarnerMedia, and executive John Stankey says the company plans to focus on increasing investment in content and distribution platforms. Plans moving forward include increasing HBO's budget to better compete with streaming services such as Netflix and launching more direct-to-consumer services, with Stankey noting, "If you're going to be a modern media company, you're going to need a variety of offerings."
Cable operators and broadcasting groups including the American Cable Association, NCTA-The Internet & Television Association and the National Association of Broadcasters agree that the Federal Communications Commission should gather more information before allowing the C-band to be used for wireless access. The groups' joint letter filed with the FCC includes a list of questions the FCC should consider before making its decision.
Comcast is willing to divest 21st Century Fox's 30% stake in Hulu to gain regulatory approval for an acquisition, sources say. Meanwhile, Fox's regional sports assets could create a regulatory hurdle for the deal, although both Comcast and Disney are willing to shed the networks to move their respective deals forward.
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