Comcast and PayPal Partner for TV Shopping
Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA), America's largest cable provider, announced on Tuesday a deal with eBay's (NASDAQ: EBAY) PayPal that will see the two companies work together to explore new forms of payment on TV.
The announcement was made on Tuesday by Comcast chief technology officer Tony Werner at the TV of Tomorrow conference in San Francisco.
At present, the plans are in the early stages of development. There have been no details revealed regarding how and when Comcast plans to incorporate PayPal's payment methods into its cable technology. Werner said in a blog post that the deal was "in the very early stages."
"This will let us work together and look at ways to expand how people can interact with their TV services in ways that offer them more choice and the ability to personalize their experiences," Werner continued. "And we view providing our viewers with single screen and co-viewing T-commerce experiences to be a natural extension of our advanced advertising products."
The deal would certainly be beneficial to both companies. PayPal hosts 110 million active accounts in 190 markets and 25 currencies around the world, which represents a huge amount of potential customers for Comcast. Similarly, the huge volume of people using Comcast's services could be attractive to PayPal.
Scott Dunlap, PayPal's vice president of emerging opportunities, must be licking his lips at the potential of this deal. He said on Tuesday that, "There's been a lot of talk about interactive 'T-commerce' for a long time, but all signs point to an industry that's finally on the verge of taking a real foothold in consumers' lives."
The Paypal deal could raise serious questions about Comcast's working relationship with HSN. Currently, HSN works with Comcast to provide technology that allows customers to buy products through their TV remotes.
However, there is great potential to take the home shopping experience a step further with PayPal, and Comcast has said that it is exploring the opportunity for consumers to make purchase related to the content they are viewing.
"We are also exploring opportunities for enabling consumers to accept coupons directly into their PayPal online wallet during television advertisements," said Dunlap.
It appears that TV advertising and TV shopping could soon become one.
Early on Wednesday, Comcast was trading near $30.25, down slightly on the session.
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