The One Mistake That Might Haunt Netflix Forever

January 17, 2013 1:37 pm

As new competitors emerge to eat up the clean monopoly that it had built over the last decade, Netflix is starting to realize that it might have made a small mistake in its content distribution model that might leave a big enough window open for others to get in. Netflix never used any Netflix devices for content distribution. You basically get the DVDs and that was it. OR, you can open up a Netflix app and stream the content to your TV, as long as you had a compatible device that could do it. This is from their homepage:

“Watch on your PS3, Wii, Xbox, PC, Mac, Mobile, Tablet and more
TV shows & movies streamed instantly over the Internet
No commitments, cancel online anytime”

Contrast that with what Amazon is up to: basically they are distributing a device, in huge numbers running into the tens (and maybe hundreds) of millions, at a loss. Apple has a different story: they have a very profitable device, but people are buying their devices at an alarming pace. Google is not far behind – they are making devices and sending it to people at a solid pace as well.

As the content distribution game enters the mobile entertainment era, and as a ‘5 inch plus’ world thirsty for mobile content gears up to move ‘anytime, anywhere availability’ to the top of its priorities, not getting a device into millions of hands (when it had the opportunity) is a mistake that might haunt Netflix for a long time.

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