So much has happened with Netflix in the past couple of days that I felt it important to spell out the actual facts of what has happened, what is happening, and what is likely to happen in the future. The opinion will come a little later…
Netflix has, for some time, been transitioning into a streaming-only company. The moves were subtle at first, with streaming given top billing, and CEO Reed Hastings signaling the intent in quarterly financial reports. But things changed in July when Netflix announced plans to drop its dual-service subscription plan and instead offer both separately.
This meant those who only streamed or only received DVDs in the mail paid $2-per-month less, but those who wanted to continue doing both faced a 60 percent increase from $9.99-per-month to $15.98-per-month. The customers were livid, and when the price changes came into effect Netflix lowered its estimates for the quarter. This led to its stock tanking, and eventually to Hastings taking bold action.
In a hefty blog post published on Sunday (Sept. 18), Hastings first apologized, then explained, and then set forth what was going to happen from here on in. Which is the complete separation of the DVDs-by-mail side of the business from the streaming side. Qwikster was born, Netflix became streaming-only, and the whole world had an opinion on the move.
The Web has since been chock-full of people complaining about or satirizing the situation. Many are using analogies of using different dentists for different parts of their mouths, or visiting one restaurant for the bread, another for the filling, when making a sandwich. Analogies, perhaps, but not necessarily good ones.
Netflix customers now face a period of change, of being either transferred to a new company or having to deal with two companies rather than one. And that will be painful, especially on top of the recent price changes.
Now read the other side of this story to get some opinion to go with the facts. And without the need to visit another website called WebTVWikster to do so.
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