Comcast Tests Combo Internet-Cable Device

Comcast Corp. is testing a new service that knits together television and the Internet, as the U.S. cable giant goes after rivals that threaten to undermine its business.

Under the new system, which is being tested in Augusta, Ga., content flows through a set-top box that combines features of the Web with those of a digital-video recorder, according to people familiar with the matter.

Users can watch and search a smattering of Web video through their televisions and search across live, on-demand and recorded programming.

The service, known to participants as “Spectrum” and internally as “Xcalibur,” doesn’t let participants freely browse the Web, though they do have some basic connections to social networks to comment on television shows, the people familiar with the matter said.

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