Archive for: netflix

Netflix Throws In The Towel, Cancels Plans To Roll Out DVD-Only “Qwikster”.

  • October 10, 2011 8:40 am

Qwikster is dead. Netflix’s DVD-only, revamped mail-in option for movie rentals didn’t even get a proper launch and the company is already throwing in the towel.

The botched Qwikster launch is more bad news piled on top an already negative image originally brought on by Netflix raising prices for DVD and streaming options many weeks back.

With that said, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings reiterated that while the company saw the spit of streaming and DVD-only as better for the brand in the long-term, they also listen to their customers, customers who were almost unanimously against the proposed spin-off.

It is clear that for many of our members two websites would make things more difficult, so we are going to keep Netflix as one place to go for streaming and DVDs.

This means no change: one website, one account, one password… in other words, no Qwikster.

While the July price change was necessary, we are now done with price changes.

On that same note, Hastings promises me Qwikster related news in the near future.

Great start to a Monday, eh?

Woah! Netflix Just Split Their DVD And Streaming Businesses. DVD Rentals Now Under “Qwikster” Brand.

  • September 19, 2011 12:32 am

Netflix has been facing a ton of criticism since raising prices several weeks back. While numbers are all over the place concerning just how many customers have jumped ship, and in turn how much money Netflix is now losing, the fact of the matter is that people aren’t happy. Solution: break it up!

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings just announced Netflix is now streaming-only. The older DVD based subscription service has been spun off into its own brand/company and is now going by the name “Qwikster”. From here on out the two brands will act completely independent of each other including separate websites and even showing up as two completely different services on your credit card (should you be subscribed to both).

It’s certainly a surprise announcement and one that we’re not too sure is the greatest of ideas. While we see the obvious benefits of splitting the two services given their distinct differences, we would have left the Netflix brand name attached to DVDs where it’s always been (and always made a killing) and given the streaming service a new name. On the flip side, doing so would mean the Netflix name would die off in the not too distant future along with DVDs so perhaps it’s not such a bad idea after all.

As of writing, shows nothing more than a splash page. One would think an announcement of a re-branded service that just happens to be your company’s biggest source of income would have all (or at least part) of the new service up and running online.

With all that said, Reed made it perfectly clear that neither service would be seeing a price hike.

Netflix/Qwikster subscribers: Thoughts?

**If you happen to be reading this post at 12:43am EST (or whatever your equivalent is) head over to the official announcement page as Reed Hastings is actually responding to user submitted comments.

Netflix Launching On Facebook In The Near Future — U.S. Left Out.

  • July 26, 2011 11:01 am

Social butterflies and Netflix junkies will soon be able to mash the two favorite past times together with the announcement that Netflix integration is coming to Facebook! The only catch — the U.S. will not be an initial launch country…

Rumor: Apple To Purchase Hulu?

  • July 24, 2011 4:05 pm

Rumor has it that Apple may be bidding on Hulu during the process of company’s sale. Hulu announced that Morgan Stanley and Guggenheim Partners would assist in the sale of the company back in June - and with that, Apple may be toying with the idea of a bid. Both Amazon and Yahoo! are interested in the company, but it makes more sense for Apple to toss it’s hat into the ring. With iTunes only being a purchase/rent service for your TV and Movie needs - Apple would finally be able to fully compete with the likes of Netflix.

Personally, I feel that Apple needs to get into the streaming game. As successful as iTunes is with the movie and TV rentals - Apple could really add to the billions they have in the bank. Being able to add a subscription based service to their media catalog - the interface of AppleTV - Apple will be a serious contender in this market. With rumors of an Apple Television on the internets, and the iDevice integration already in place, no one would pass up on the ability to stream. With Apple already having a big collection of new and older options, to add the streaming service would do nothing but dominate the market.

What about you guys - would you fork over more of your hard earned cash to Apple for a subscription service for your streaming needs? Would you keep your Netflix subscriptions?

Buzz Kill: Netflix Requires DRM Chip For Android Tablets?

  • July 20, 2011 9:40 am

If Netflix support on Android tablets is something that even remotely interests you, wait! Wait to buy a new tablet and for the love of everything holy don’t get early 2011 hardware. Why? It won’t run Netflix. While details are still a bit sketchy, it is looking like Netflix is requiring an actual DRM hardware chip to bring support to tablets.

For now, Lenovo has a short exclusive with Netflix starting with the Lenovo IdeaPad K1 tablet. But once the barriers come down expect to see a slew of Netflix-capable tablets hit the market.

Besides no love for legacy tablet owners, the issue of fragmentation is once again thrust into the mainstream. Netflix has only officially licensed certain mobile processors so far — Qualcomm Snapdragon and Texas Instruments OMAP 4 — likely revolving around the same DRM chip mentioned above. However, the much more popular Nvidia Tegra 2 processor hasn’t yet made the cut possibly meaning no Netflix supoprt.

It goes without saying that anyone who bout a tablet up until this point was just dealt a serious blow. Hopefully Netflix changes the requirements a bit and allows some form of software nanny (read: DRM) to be used in place of hardware. If not, customer uproar will make the recent price hike backlash seem like a Friday night frat party.

Android hacker community: Your new challenge is to make Netflix work on any Android tablet. Go!

AT&T Responds To Netflix Op-ed Criticizing Usage Based Billing.

  • July 14, 2011 1:28 pm

You didn’t think AT&T was going to sit back and let Netflix General Counsel David Hyman walk all over them without responding, did you? Today, AT&T General Counsel Wayne Watts rebuked (subscription) Hyman’s claims about usage-based billing while also calling out this obvious bias seeing as how Netflix accounts for up to 30% of heavy network load during peak hours.

The way we see it — both sides have valid points, though AT&T’s pedestal is much smaller. Wayne argues that AT&T is doing customers a favor by only charging them for what they use. The only thing he conveniently leaves out is that the prices attached to the various tiers are grossly over priced for the bandwidth/allotment they deliver.

Netflix’s David Hyman on the other hand has got it right when he calls AT&T’s tactics “bad for consumers and bad for the economy”. We’ll add that any claims made by a land-based telco of bandwidth shortages are false. Internet speeds continue to rise, prices continue to drop (albeit slowly), and coverage continues to expand all while the same companies report larger and larger profits each year. It doesn’t take a genius to see we’re being fed a basket full of lies.

But alas, you have to justify your bloated paychecks and fancy title somehow, right?

Netflix Separates Unlimited DVD And Streaming Plans, Readjusts Pricing.

  • July 12, 2011 1:56 pm

Don’t you love how technology lowers the cost of entry to countless goods and services — except when it doesnt! Netflix unveiled a slightly tweaked product offering and pricing scheme for their DVD rental and streaming services while also adding a few more dollars to your monthly bill to boot.

The New Plans:

  • Unlimited DVD-only Plan: $7.99/month for 1 CD and $11.99/month for 2 DVDs
  • Streaming-only Unlimited Plan: $7.99/month
  • Unlimited DVD + Streaming Plan: $15.98/month

The packaged deal of having both DVD and Streaming plans at the old $9.99 is no longer available. As such, the new “bundle” isn’t really a savings of any sort, so unless you really like DVDs, you’re better off streaming your world away. Of course, considering the nature of physical vs. digital media we wouldn’t have it any other way. Bring on the digital goods we say!

Netflix Streaming “Theoretically Possible” On Wii U Controller.

  • July 11, 2011 8:07 am

Nintendo’s Wii U console certainly stole the show at last months E3 expo. Unfortunately, Nintendo’s keynote left many unanswered question with many of those circulating around the unique characteristics of the Wii U controller and its 6″ display. Since the Wii U will not play DVDs or Blu-ray and must rely on streaming content to its display, many questioned if Netflix support (and similar services) would be supported. While official confirmation from Nintendo has thus far eluded us, Forbes’ David E. Ewalt managed to snag answer an from president and chief operating officer of Nintendo of America, Reggie Fils-Aime, regarding such during an interview last month.

According to Reggie, Netflix streaming to the Wii U controller is “theoretically possible”. Nothing else is said in the interview regarding either Netflix or streaming services signalling a potential disinterest by Nintendo. It’s sad if that’s the case as more and more people are wanting multiple-use gadgets in their living room. Just look at all the services you can tie into your PS3 or Xbox 360. Not only are said services making money, but Sony/Microsoft as well whom surely have revenue sharing deals in place.

Ultimately we’ll have to wait until closer to the 2012 Wii U launch date before we find out more.

Rumor: Zune Won’t Die - Microsoft Busts Out Defibrillator Once Again?

  • July 10, 2011 3:52 pm

We’ve seen the Zune do what it does best - suck. For a long, long time we’ve had to see the brand thrown at us whether it be at retailers, Microsoft’s website, or something I see every day - the XBox Dashboard. I’ve been longing for the day I won’t see that first on my ‘Video Marketplace’ section on the Dashboard, or maybe a day I can re-arrange the listings to have Netflix come first. Instead of that happening, rumors from up here in the Northwest are saying Zune will be getting a much needed revamp.

Since it’s XBox debut back in 2009, not much has been done with the service, but the sweet nothings that are being whispered are saying we’ll have the service updated to rival the likes of Netflix and Hulu Plus. If you aren’t familiar with the latter two, they are a subscription based internet streaming service used on your XBox, Wii, PS3, computer and even your cellphone. Zune has given us pay per view type services - which really limits how many people will use it. And if the specs are true, not many people did use it. Kind of like the Zune Media Player we had years ago, it seemed just like another failure that was under the Zune Umbrella. Well, 2011 and things might just get a little bit better for Microsoft and the Zune brand. With the rumored streaming subscriptions, I feel more people will use the service. I’m not sure how popular their TV Pass service is, but I would assume with the likes of Hulu Plus and Netflix they can’t be too impressive.

We’ve contacted Microsoft inquiring about what type of subscriptions they’ll offer, and if the rumors are even true. As soon as we learn more we’ll let you know. But you can bet this will might give Netflix a run for its money!