Netflix will soon get its own television ‘cable channel’


Well that makes no sense at all. Many are ditching cable to go exclusively to netflix and hulu. How does that even make sense?


What’s a cable channel?


It’s for people like my parents, who get extremely confused at having to change the tv’s input to something else (“why can’t we just turn it to channel three like with the vcr?”)


I see it as cable companies trying to compete and to stay relevant. That said, I will lose my mind if Comcast eventually does this. In the past eight months I have dropped serious cash on two bluray players (I have no bluray discs) and a roku box. Not to mention the chromecast which has been nothing more than an exercise in frustration.

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Reading this I am now embarrassed at how much I spend on entertainment! HD cable with all the bells and whistles, three HD tvs (in an apartment), netflix, and the aforementioned boxes. Oh dear god.


In a net-neutrality world, where Americans have similar bandwidth into the home that Swedes or South Koreans and the ISP just moves the bits, it would make no sense. Traditional cable would die and everything would be on-demand. But the way we’re going, Comcast will be able to use its market power to punish any competition for online video and everything will be channels, and the ISP will take its cut. In that world, people like Netflix will just have to make deals with each cable company and each mega-ISP to be able to reach its customers.


In other news, Twitter is now available in newspaper form, Greyhound announces a fleet of horse-drawn carriages, and a new iPhone app lets you communicate using morse code.


It may be of interest that Netflix is already available to Virgin Media cable subscribers in the UK in this form - channel 204 is Netflix. You put in your PIN and you have to have a Netflix account, but the video comes down the cable line just like any other channel. YouTube also has a channel. For all that people are suggesting this is a retrograde luddite step it puts the service into millions more homes.

(I should also mention that people in the UK generally don’t hate their cable companies because we have loads of choice and by and large good broadband service, so I didn’t see it as trying to stay relevant, just another service being offered)

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They had to get something for the protection money. Otherwise it would be a racket.


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