Netflix appears to have a new competitor waiting in the wings ready to strike while the U.S. DVD and streaming giant is languishing on the ropes. But ‘appears’ is the operative word, because Vdio is as yet an unknown quantity.
In the world of streaming video it’s currently Netflix… and then everyone else. Amazon is the nearest competitor with its Amazon Prime offering. But Netflix has had a tumultuous past few months, which we’ve discussed on several different occasions here on WebTVWire.
The question is, do these troubles leave room for some competition to sneak in and grab customers?
We don’t know much about Vdio but what we do know is it lets you “instantly watch the best in TV and movies,” is launching in the U.K. first, is currently in closed beta, and was founded by Janus Friis, former founder of Skype, KaZaA, Rdio and… Joost.
That’s right. Lo and behold Vdio is a startup from one of the people behind the long-dead online television service. And while the service may be a completely different beast the whole ‘quiet launch, building buzz’ shenanigans has a familiar feel to it.
The set up sure sounds impressive, with a team loaded with experienced professionals. It also has funding in place and an intention to launch in the U.K. soon. But we’ve seen promising startups fail to deliver when it actually comes time to launch before. And there’s no guarantee Vdio won’t suffer the same fate.
Vdio is already doing a lot of things right: starting small, launching in the U.K. first, striking while there is a gap in the market. But the timing and the nature of the service being offered are going to be crucial.
If Vdio can grab content for Europe, launch quickly, and at a competitive price, then it could grow big enough to do a Spotify. In other words, move across the Atlantic and compete with the big U.S. companies head-on. But that’s a big ask when we don’t even know exactly what Vdio is at this point.
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