Mario Sundar

LinkedIn's 2nd PR hire. These are my thoughts on products, public relations, and startups.

Netflix listens? Streaming movies for current users

Following our recent coverage on Netflix and its business model, I was pleasantly surprised to see Netflix’s announcement today on NYT about adding a feature that enables their users to stream movies. Here’s a video demo from Netflix’s biggest fan and critic — blogger Hacking Netflix!

I did check my Netflix account and couldn’t see that feature — a PLAY icon, right next to your ADD icon next to each movie; all it takes is a Netflix piece of software that needs to be downloaded on your sytem — one time.

Like most other electronic distribution services, Netflix’s system will work initially only with a limited catalog. The bulk of Netflix’s subscribers, who pay $18 a month and are allowed to keep three movies at home at all times, will receive 18 hours of free watching every month.

That’s a good start… Seems like a good counter-move to the immediate gratification principle touted by Blockbuster:

We have everything that Netflix has, plus the immediate gratification of never having to wait for a movie – John F. Antioco, CEO Blockbuster

While Mr. Reed Hastings, CEO Netflix, contents that

Netflix has a product that compares well with those of his competitors. He particularly emphasized Netflix’s business model — free to subscribers — and its focus on instant gratification.

Source: NYT Article — Netflix to deliver movies to the PC

Is immediate gratification the key to success in this competitive home-video market?

Filed under: Uncategorized

8 Responses

  1. A wise move from Netflix. I would expect BB to offer something similar down the road.

    Note: I think some customers probably don’t want to download special software to watch the movies.

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  2. Yes, immediate gratification is it.
    Considering the competition from Cable Video-on-Demand and the future of apple, google, verizon, at&t, xbox360, the venice project (now Joost).

    and Community too! 😀

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  3. Paul McEnany says:

    Hell yeah! I actually just signed up for blockbuster online for the two week trial because I figured the in-store thing would be too hard to pass up (even though I canceled it before to move to netflix). Now, I seriously doubt I’ll be moving along…

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  4. Hi Mario,

    Isn’t BB part of Viacom (used to be)? Couldn’t they start providing exclusive content to BB via MTV, etc. ? Just a thought…

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  5. Mario Sundar says:

    I don’t think BB is a part of Viacom, Damon. Even if they did, they would be shooting themselves in the foot by partnering exclusively w/ BB while the rest of the world still debates other alternatives. Yep, they no longer are a part of Viacom: http://media.www.thebatt.com/media/storage/paper657/news/2004/02/11/News/Viacom.To.Shed.Blockbuster.Stake-603358.shtml?sourcedomain=www.thebatt.com&MIIHost=media.collegepublisher.com.

    Well, looks like the 2 Mario’s agree on something 🙂 Mario, so when are you starting your own blog?

    Paul,
    If the in-store thing was your key criteria, I think you’ll be a satisfied customer w/ BB. Unless I hear otherwise from you on a Kohl’s style expose. Good job, Paul, on your investigative journalism.

    Also, congrats on the success of your podcast! Way to go!

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  6. First I’m getting my business site up (just a construction page up for now), then add the WordPress blog focused on consumer product goods, product dev & design, and marketing.

    Paul, that was a great Kohl’s story. PR was back to you quickstyle! I’ll have to check out your podcast.

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  7. Hi Mario,

    I guess I should check some things out first;-)

    Regardless, I think BB could do a lot on the branding front with BB. I don’t think that exclusivity is entirely a bad thing…

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  8. Mario Sundar says:

    Mario,

    I can’t wait to check out your new blog.

    As for Paul’s story, looks like there’s an interesting twist to it. Check out his blog post here: http://heehawmarketing.typepad.com/hee_haw_marketing/2007/01/the_kohls_backl.html

    Like

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