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Comcast Enters Smart-TV Market With Launch of Sky Glass in Europe

Comcast Corp.

CMCSA 1.34%

on Thursday said it has built a smart TV that will run on its own operating system, the company’s latest answer to the streaming wars.

The broadband-powered smart TV, called Sky Glass, will be available to U.K. customers of Sky, Comcast’s European pay-TV unit, later this month and in other European markets next year. The company wouldn’t say whether a Comcast-powered smart TV would be launched in the U.S. soon.

Comcast has been at work developing smart TVs for some time, part of its effort to become a dominant player in the streaming market. Last November, The Wall Street Journal reported that Comcast had been working with Chinese manufacturer Hisense and

Walmart Inc.

to develop smart TVs.

Sky Glass, which integrates Comcast’s technology platform and Sky’s content, will mark the first time in the U.K., where Sky is based, that customers can receive Sky without a satellite dish.

The company said Sky Glass was built so that it could be used by other pay-TV operators. Sky said Thursday Australian pay-TV company Foxtel Group will use Sky Glass. Comcast has a similar partnership with Cox Communications Inc. in the U.S. with its cable and streaming boxes. Foxtel is part of

News Corp,

the parent company of Wall Street Journal publisher Dow Jones & Co.

Comcast has been doing more to integrate its operations with Sky, which it acquired in 2018. In July, the Philadelphia-based company said it would give NBCUniversal’s streaming service, Peacock, to Sky’s 20 million subscribers across Europe at no additional cost.

Comcast has also partnered with

ViacomCBS Inc.

in recent months to join forces in international markets. The companies reached a deal that makes Paramount+ free to Sky Cinema subscribers in Sky markets including the U.K., Switzerland, Italy and Germany. The deal also extends to carry ViacomCBS channels on Sky’s pay-TV systems.

The two U.S. media giants also announced they are joining forces with SkyShowtime, a subscription streaming service they plan to launch next year in more than 20 European territories outside of Sky’s footprint.

Write to Lillian Rizzo at [email protected]

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