Find updated article on the situation here.
At this point, I think it’s safe to say that Netflix is an unstoppable beast. For as little as $8.99/month you can get something that is far more superior than anything Comcast or Dish has to offer at $50+/month and I think it’s very likely to put Blockbuster’s brick and mortar stores out of business. I think they’ll stay in the game with their online clone of what Netflix has done, but otherwise, become a thing of the past.
Besides being cheaper, Netflix is available to more people and has a much larger selection of movies and TV shows than probably any of them combined. In addition to getting Blu-rays and DVDs in the mail, many titles are available instantly to your computer, Xbox, PlayStation, and many other devices. If you don’t have any of those and are just sporting a TV then you can get a Roku (still need internet connection) and hook it up directly to your TV.
We’re also seeing a shift with big cable channels like Showtime and HBO who are getting into the game of offering their catalog over Netflix. Through Instant Watch, I’ve already watched the entire series of many of my favorite TV shows. It’s not just the very best and most popular films and TV shows that make it to Instant Watch either. There is so much more including: rare gems, special interest, documentaries, and more.
Also, Netflix is not riddled with ads and sponsors and there are no late fees ever, even if you’re late on your monthly bill. I’ve been late a few times and the reminders couldn’t be nicer or more non-threatening. Netflix is probably the best company I have ever had the privilege and the luxury to be a customer of. Other companies take note: Netflix is a company you can learn something from.
So, here’s my prediction:
“Netflix, in 2010, makes Cable and Blockbuster Obsolete”
The only remaining chance any of them have is to clone what Netflix is doing, but to that end, Netflix has pretty much already cornered the market.
Sick of hearing Netflix this and Netflix that? Well, I challenge you to signup for a free Netflix trial and we’ll see if you don’t think it’s the best thing since sliced bread.
UPDATE — New predictions I’ve been thinking about.
The possibilities of Netflix partnering with YouTube to stream YouTube videos directly to your TV. Also, possible further integration with cable channels and the future of Netflix as a “cable provider” itself. That instead of just streaming movies and TV from Showtime, HBO, etc., that it may run their actual 24/7 schedule. Naturally, other channels may get into the mix as well.
The potential and growth for Netflix is endless. I also see it adapting all the OnDemand type features, workout videos, dating, and so on. My big hope is that Netflix buys out GameFly (which is the Netflix equivalent for video games). We’ll see how many predictions come true in the coming years…