Flutterby™! : Streaming

Next unread comment / Catchup all unread comments User Account Info | Logout | XML/Pilot/etc versions | Long version (with comments) | Weblog archives | Site Map | | Browse Topics


2010-12-10 15:52:20.394998+00 by Dan Lyke 7 comments

Interesting: Is Netflix streaming its way towards disaster? looks at the economics of Netflix's streaming licenses and why that might not be sustainable. Via MeFi which has some other interesting links on the topic.

[ related topics: Technology and Culture Movies Television Economics ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2010-12-10 16:31:01.957303+00 by: m

Cable TV is a disaster. I will turn it on when I am too physically and mentally tired to do anything, but am not able to sleep. That happens perhaps once a month or so. Even my wife is close to agreeing with me that the cable box is not worth the space it takes up in the entertainment equipment stack.

Netflix is more interesting. There is a significant library of films, though the ones available for streaming tend to be older and worse, far less interesting. The postal costs for Netflix must be ferocious. Over $0.80 for a round trip of a DVD. I have seen accounts from Netflix executives that the streaming royalties are significantly lower than postage. But I find a tendency to start and discard iffy films that I would never order on a DVD. Depending on their royalty structures such behavior could be a make/break cost.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-12-11 11:50:01.987447+00 by: DaveP

I currently have the 1 DVD/Blu-Ray at a time plan from Netflix, and am one of the people who gets "throttled" because I return the disks "too quickly." But that's fine with me because there's tons of stuff available on their streaming.

When I signed up with Netflix (a year ago), it was because I was dropping my DirecTV and I won't get cable from the local company. If fewer titles are available on streaming, that will change my view of the value. Price increases on the streaming, far less so, since I'm replacing a service that was costing roughly $80/month with one that runs me $12/month.

Beyond the cost, one of the benefits for me of Netflix is that it gives me something closer to a la carte pricing on the content. I don't feel that I'm paying for "channels" I never watch, or am having my movies subsidized by shopping networks. That was one of the things that always bugged me about cable and DirecTV, especially since on DirecTV, every time I would program out the shopping channels, they'd shuffle the channels, and I'd have to go back and program them out again.

But I'm also far from typical. I don't even have an antenna for local broadcasts. Everything on my TV comes over the net. But I also have only one provider, Netflix.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-12-11 14:22:51.577922+00 by: meuon

While Nancy and I haven't been throttled, a movie often lies around for a couple of days before we watch it. we've been in the same boat. We'll turn on our basic basic cable every once in a great while, and about the third time in 30 minutes we see the same ad, we turn it off.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-12-11 16:44:19.913125+00 by: Larry Burton

Right now I'm still watching TV on ten year old or older sets and receiving my programming via satellite. The pictures are getting darker on those sets and my watching habits have changed enough that I'm trying to figure out the direction to go when I upgrade hardware. We have Netflix and I'm liking what is available in streaming from them, Hulu and various other sources on the Internet. We also have a couple of Tivo series 2 DVRs.

What I want to do is buy a new HD television, drop the satellite, install an antennae, and incorporate some sort of Netflix/Hulu streaming device in the mix with my existing Tivos. Now this article brings some uncertainty to the availability and cost of streaming through Netflix in the long term.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-12-12 12:37:50.74209+00 by: DaveP

Larry, that's one of the reasons I bought a PS3 as my primary Blu-Ray player. It can play those (and it was one of the better players on the market when I bought it a year ago) and it has a Netflix streaming client. It has other clients available too, so if Netflix stops or gets hideously expensive, I'll hopefully just sign up for a different service.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-12-12 15:30:15.870045+00 by: Larry Burton

Dave, my son has a PS3 and he and I started playing around with various media servers running on my Kubuntu box and his PS3. I'm thinking I may have figured out the combination that would make me happy if only content providers continue to cooperate. Mediatomb running along with MythTV as a backend with the PS3 as the front end may be what I'm looking for.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-12-12 16:23:20.812575+00 by: topspin

I'm close to Dave, although I have an antenna connected to a Windows Media Center PC (though I'm seriously thinking of switching to XBMC) in my bedroom. Via that PC and a big ol' Samsung monitor (haven't gotten around to getting a TV yet) I could get Netflix, though I don't.

I do get Hulu and whatnot via Zinc and Boxee and I've recently started toying with a "TV Browser" called Kylo which is a bit primitive, but heading in a good direction.

In the LR sleeps a big ol' Sony I got from Eric 8 or so years ago and an even older surround system. It has no antenna, but does have an el cheapo BluRay player that, again, could speak Netflix and does speak Twonky to a MyBook WE in another bedroom somewhere. Best of all, the player speaks Pandora, which in turn assures Amazon.com a secure revenue stream from me.