Netflix is in talks with multiple cable companies to create an on Demand channel with Netflix content. According to the Wall Street Journal, they are in talks with Comcast and Suddenlink Communications to add this service.
Last month Netflix signed a deal with Virgin Media to put their service on the set top box. There wouldn’t be a Netflix channel per-say, just an app on their on Demand lineup similar to what Dish did when they purchased Blockbuster.
Netflix dominates as one of the top streaming platforms on the Internet. With their app on all set top boxes (Apple TV, Roku, Boxee, etc.), game consoles and app driven TVs; along with an expectation of 40 million streaming subscribers by 2015, the company would be an asset to any device. Even a cable box.
Still, cable companies are declining. Time Warner and AT&T have said no to adding the channel. That could all change in the future if a good deal is worked out.
What About Netflix as an Actual Cable Channel?
While they don’t normally program their content, would a physical cable channel to compete with HBO and Showtime be a possibility? Scheduling their shows like House of Cards, Arrested Development and Orange is the New Black could bring more promotion to the streaming service. It might even break that wall between cable and streaming content.
Netflix definitely has content to show on a cable channel. They might have to reconfigure contracts, but with a good mix of movies and TV binges (similar to what USA is doing with Modern Family and NCIS marathons), those people who don’t like to pick and choose will be satisfied with programmed content.
What Netflix Could Bring to Cable Companies
Netflix has spent that last couple years refining their search algorithms. What is to say that could not be a bargaining chip? Currently, most cable systems online guides are bland and sometimes hard to navigate. If Netflix was to inject their style into an on Demand menu, the user experience would get out of 2002 and more of a web interface that we are currently used to.
With adding Netflix, there is possibility for cable channels to profit. For one example – maybe customers won’t be so quick to cut their cable. Maybe they would even hit the “On Demand” button a little more – or even for the first time. Might not be the best idea to quickly dismiss this idea…