Early in 2011, Comcast made video on-demand streaming to iOS and Android devices a reality, and has also been a pioneer in beaming live cable TV to mobile devices through the AnyPlay service. Now the company has updated its Xfinity TV Player app to support downloads from a number of premium channels for offline viewing.
The app, which is free to subscribers, allows downloads from Showtime, Starz, Encore and MoviePlex. You must have those premium channels in your cable package to be able to download content. Note that this is not the same app as the Xfinity TV app, so be sure you have the correct app installed before looking for downloads.
Xfinity TV Player offers downloadable content in several sizes -- for Cars 2, for example, I was given the option of a high-quality file at 679.4 MB or a medium-quality file with a smaller file size. Downloads on a WiFi connected iPhone 5 were leisurely to say the least, so grabbing a movie for consumption is not something you want to do as you're heading out the door to head for the airport.
So, how do the files look on an iOS device? Pretty good. It's well worth the time and effort if you're an Xfinity customer and would like some extra content to keep yourself or the kids busy while flying to grandma's house for the Thanksgiving turkey.