It's easy to feel somewhat torn by Netflix's recent moves to pay Comcast and now Verizon for better access to their broadband subscribers. On one hand, as a FiOS subscriber, I should see better quality video and fewer buffering messages when binging on MST3K and catching up on Walking Dead. On the other hand, as a concerned citizen, I should be really, really worried about the precedent Netflix is setting just as the FCC completes its third revision of net neutrality rules.
Netflix has signed a new interconnection agreement with Verizon in an effort to improve the experience it can provide to users that leverage the service provider's fiber to the home (FTTH) network for access to the streaming video service.
Netflix has stepped up the argument in favour of 'strong net neutrality', even as it negotiates connectivy deals with ISPs on both sides of the Atlantic to ensure decent services for its end-users. It's a war of words that will continue, and there is clearly a great deal at stake for both sides. However, beyond the commercial bun fights over who should pay and how, much more needs to be clarified; the devil with net neutrality is in the detail.
AT&T jumped into the online video space with both feet Tuesday, announcing a joint venture with the Chernin Group. The Tier 1 provider committed more than $500 million to fund SVOD services, advertising and other online streaming initiatives.
Netflix will increase its monthly streaming subscription price by one to two dollars, "depending on the country," this quarter, CEO Reed Hastings and CFO David Wells wrote in a letter to shareholders this afternoon. The announcement coincided with the release of Netflix's first quarter results, in which the company notched 2.25 million new customers in the United States.
Executives polling two middle and high school students at a recent summit on over-the-top services were set back a bit by the middle schooler's frank admission: She doesn't watch Netflix much, if at all.
For the third time since 2012, Netflix is the target of a patent suit filed by Nagra and OpenTV, both owned by Swiss company Kudelski SA. The suit involves four patents related to digital TV services.
There's no joy at Netflix today: The FCC rejected CEO Reed Hastings' request to regulate interconnects between the various networks that make up today's Internet. The online video provider had pushed for the expanded net neutrality rules so that it would no longer have to pay a toll to access Comcast's network.
While much of the attention of the net neutrality debates between Netflix and major carriers like Comcast and AT&T have focused on having enough last mile bandwidth to the home, the real problem actually resides in the Internet peering backbone points. Sam Bookman, editor of FierceOnlineVideo, examines this issue in her latest Editor's Corner. Read more
Earlier this week, media outlets lit up with news that Apple might be negotiating a deal with Comcast to stream the cable giant's linear TV and on-demand video across its Apple TV device. A number of articles arose almost as quickly analyzing whether or not this would actually happen, and why. The rumors can't be completely dismissed, but the biggest traffic issues, and the deals put together to prevent them, may be taking place well before the last mile.