I got a call Thursday afternoon from a source at Comcast who wanted to pass along more information about watching NBC's Premier League Extra Time coverage via Xfinity On Demand.
Comcast is working on adding the ability to join games live in progress instead of starting from zero every time you tune in to a feed. The functionality isn't quite ready yet, and won't be this coming weekend.
The work on adding the ability to watch content live through Xfinity On Demand started multiple weeks before the Premier League season began. As this is the first time they've ever run live content through the platform, they are still working out kinks in the process.
When I asked my source if I could get a firm launch date for the ability to watch live, I was told they don't want to set one, but they'll let me know as soon as it's ready.
As the source said to me:
We're working very hard to try to roll it out as soon as possible... We'd love to have a time. Since this is a whole new technology of creating live content through the on-demand platform, our technology people are not comfortable committing to a date yet.
Some readers asked me last weekend whether it could be as simple as enabling the fast-forward function on a feed, so that you could jump ahead to the live point. Those readers pointed out to me that the fast-forward button was disabled when watching games.
I was told that the fast-forward function in Xfinity On Demanad doesn't quite work the same way as it does with when you rewind live television on a DVR. Say you go back two minutes on a live TV broadcast to review something, then hit fast-forward. When you get to the live point, you'll resume watching the live feed.
With the On Demand platform, you wouldn't be able to do that. You'd hit the live point and then jump back to the beginning of the feed.
The main reason why Comcast didn't add the feeds as TV channels was that they didn't want to take up bandwidth with channels that only have live content for two hours or so each week.
So in short, you're still going to be stuck for this weekend. I was told that I'll be informed as soon as the technology to join a game live through In Demand is enabled, and I'll pass that along to you right away.
In the meantime, the online feeds are available and work the way they should. If you want to watch live action, I'd say they're your most reliable option right now.