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Netflix To Lose 1 Million Subscribers 349

Posted by samzenpus
from the abandon-ship dept.
tekgoblin writes "In light of the recent price increase at Netflix, it made quite a few subscribers mad. Netflix expects to lose around 1 million total subscribers in the short term after the price changes (which split off separate subscription plans for streaming video and DVD rentals). On top of the price increase, Netflix will lose their contract with Starz in February, which will cost them around 1,000 total streaming titles from their collection."
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Netflix To Lose 1 Million Subscribers

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  • WHAT??!?! (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 15, 2011 @10:20PM (#37416302)
    Please no! This can't be true!!!

    Netflix loses a million subscribers?!
    No! My world is at an end!!!
  • by IICV (652597) on Thursday September 15, 2011 @10:24PM (#37416322)

    Well really, what the heck did they expect? The e-mail they sent out about splitting up the streaming and dvd mailing services was ridiculously patronizing.

    I mean, I would have been a lot more okay with things if they'd just been straightforward and said "look, the people we get our content from are raising the prices on us, we need to charge you more to cover it". That's fine, that I can understand.

    Instead, those assholes decided to pitch it as some sort of super awesome deal, where instead of being forced to pay for streaming and dvd mailing together, you're now paying for them separately! It's great! So much better than the old deal! And you, the consumer, are such an idiot that you're not even going to notice that the price of your plan increased significantly, doubling in some cases! (if you're like me and you were on the 1 dvd + streaming plan).

    Do they not have any sort of market demographics at all? Do they have no idea the kinds of people that subscribe to their service? We're more likely to be early adopters, for goodness' sakes; we're not going to appreciate being talked down to like we're children who can't do math.

    And look, I do appreciate Netflix - as convenient as Redbox is, it doesn't quite have the selection. It's just, reading that goddamn e-mail about the new plans left such a bad taste in my mouth I couldn't stand giving them money any more.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 15, 2011 @10:29PM (#37416348)

    I thought they did pitch a super awesome deal.

    I had been paying $16 a month for a couple DVDs and streaming, but I never really streamed much content. I would if I was bored and had nothing else to do but overall the streaming selection was too thin. After the announcement I moved to DVD only and now pay $12. I like having the option of de-coupling the streaming, especially in light of the impending price increase for streaming (via the studios).

  • Re:Linux client (Score:5, Insightful)

    by grommit (97148) on Thursday September 15, 2011 @10:39PM (#37416416)
    Haha, no they wouldn't. A good portion of Linux users would bitch about how the client isn't completely open source. Netflix may get a couple thousand extra subscribers if they made a linux client but nowhere near enough to cover the 1 million they are estimated to lose due to the price increase.
  • Re:WHAT??!?! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jhoegl (638955) on Thursday September 15, 2011 @10:40PM (#37416424)
    Streaming library does suck, but it isnt like Starz was putting out the latest in greatest. In fact they have not updated in a while.

    Out of 1,000 movies, a good 70% of them are old black and whites, or westerns, crap I could care less about. Another 20% is kids movies, and out of the left over 10%, well... I watched all the good ones I wanted to.
    But I do watch some of the series they have on there... Firefly (rewatch that alot), Scrubs (rewatch), Star Trek series (Watching Enterprise now), Law&Order CI (watching), etc.

    That makes it kinda worth it. They have a few more months before I decide to drop them.
  • by HumanEmulator (1062440) on Thursday September 15, 2011 @10:44PM (#37416442)
    It's tough to be the middleman... Netflix stands between the consumers and the content providers, but streaming video is rapidly becoming a commodity, so no doubt the content providers will get greedy and decide they want to own the whole thing end to end. I'm sure they'll ignore the amazing feat Netflix has accomplished (namely getting people to pay for streaming content online) and attempt to set up their own sites with onerous terms (pay-per-view with 24 hours to start) and high monthly rates, then be all surprised when no one signs up and start claiming piracy is destroying their business.
  • by Atmchicago (555403) on Thursday September 15, 2011 @10:46PM (#37416452) Homepage
    If they lose customers, but get more money per customer, it can work to Netflix's advantage big time. Their costs are mostly on bandwidth, and if they lose 1 million customers, that's 1 million fewer people to feed data to. That amounts to major cost cutting, so even if revenues drop a little but are offset by lower costs then they win.
  • Re:WHAT??!?! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by artor3 (1344997) on Thursday September 15, 2011 @11:09PM (#37416574)

    I'm sure they didn't want to hike their prices. But the studios that provide the movies and TV shows demanded huge (like, order of magnitude) increases in their cuts. Netflix had a choice: close up shop, or raise prices. In the end, they may go under either way. That is the studios' goal, after all. They want to control distribution.

  • by Anarchduke (1551707) on Thursday September 15, 2011 @11:21PM (#37416646)
    You could just do what millions already know. To get true HD quality with total portability. AND

    an unmatched selection of titles ....

    Including the newest titles anywhere...

    use BITTORRENT !!!
  • by pavon (30274) on Thursday September 15, 2011 @11:33PM (#37416718)

    Netflix did better than I thought they would. They only lost 4% of their subscribers over this, and it looks like their revenue is going to go up. Pretending that everyone was on the cheapest plan, they used to have 25 million subscribers paying $10 a month for $250 million/month. Now they have 21.8 million paying for streaming and another 14.2 million paying for DVD, each at $8 a month for a total of $288 million/month. Since the price of the larger plans didn't change as much as the cheapest one, I think it is safe to say that they will be making more money when this is done than they did before.

    Suppose they had given a $2 discount for people on both plans, like I thought they should. They would have increased revenue further by doing that if everyone stayed, and 2.6 million more people decided to go with both plans, or alternately if the same number left but 4 million decided to have both plans. Of course, that doesn't consider increased costs of both plans.

  • by SecurityGuy (217807) on Friday September 16, 2011 @12:25AM (#37416930)

    So according to TFA, Netflix had 12 million people paying $10/month for streaming+DVD. Those 12 million people will now pay $16/month. That's an extra $72m/month.

    10 million (like me) are streaming only at $8/month. They're losing 200,000 of those, or $1.6 million/month.

    3 million get the DVD only plan. They're losing 800,000 of those. I don't know what the average DVD only customer pays, but let's be generous and say it's $20/month. This'll cost Netflix $16m/month. They're still $55 million/month in the black.

    So you're all saying Netflix has done something really stupid because they're...making more money?

    Netflix has pissed people off simply because people don't want to pay more, not because the service isn't worth it. I get TONS of value for my $8/month. I may get around to adding the DVD bit for those shows I can't stream because another $8/month is peanuts. I spend more than that for one movie ticket. I spent more than that on lunch today. But somehow I'm supposed to be all outraged that a service I actually like wants me to pay that much to watch movies all month long. I just don't see it. Sorry.

  • by EdIII (1114411) on Friday September 16, 2011 @04:11AM (#37417732)

    Netflix does not have competitors.

    All the cable company and sat company offerings are super expensive. In so many cases you are literally paying over a $100 per month for a package and plan that allows you the privilege of spending even more ridiculous amounts renting movies for 24-48 hours.

    The aforementioned bullshit takes the crown, but then there are their competitors which provide you with the illusion of ownership with DRM'd systems. Blockbuster is a competitor physically and now with streaming as well. However, their pricing plans are hysterical. Same offer to "own" a DVD for $15-$30. Streaming "Rentals" are in many cases more costly than it ever was to rent them physically.

    Amazon is basically Block Buster's Bullshit Online(tm). Renting a TV Show for $2? Really? Same thing with the movie rentals. Unlimited Amazon Prime has nothing really good for selection. Netflix beats them hands down in that department. If you want commercial free current TV show episodes, sure you're fine. I kind of find it hard to be a competitor though if you are spending over $100 per month on show rentals because you are really into several weekly show. Prime is just being pronounced with the "bs" silent.

    Redbox is convenient, but it is like the radio. Only the best (paid) get played and you have limited options. They also make their money on you forgetting to return it, which is why they are priced well at a $1. Seriously, if you are lazy, overworked and tired you would probably think, "Fuck it. It's a $1. I spend more at Del Taco everyday". They are coming out with streaming, but Netflix is pretty fast. Not to mention queued. It's hard to call Redbox a real competitor right now. Closest too it, certainly.

    The rest are a bunch of websites like Hulu who deliver advertising laden worthless crap that often force you to install so much DRM infrastructure in your computer, calling it "your" computer is like a farcical play where you are the king of the idiots, but don't know it.

    Nevertheless, Netlfix is going to die. Precisely, because it has no competitors at this point.

    All the market share that Netflix has destroyed, and revenue grabbed, in the cable and sat networks, which affected the content producers as well, and the advertisers which are none to happy right now, did not earn Netflix any friends. When you can't tell a cable TV network from a content provider you are really fucked on Netflix's flip side which is eating the fuck out the bandwidth everywhere for free, and those are pretty much the exact words from the executives. Seriously, ISPs just love it when they are overselling by 50-100x and you cause them to actually have to start delivering on promises. It's like a run on the banks and they don't have the cash on hand. They have been messing with ISP and backbone provider profits for quite some time.

    Big Content is not happy. They could not forsee Netflix becoming what it is, and they were in their experimental phase with licensing for streaming. They have realized they have to do so period. Much like movie companies realized they have to distribute R5 releases to Russia almost right after the movie hits theaters to compete with the pirates. So they became more cooperative figuring they were going to at least make some money, rather than no money. Plus, who knows how this will work out.

    Nobody on the content side wants Netflix to continue on the streaming. DVD is a different story entirely, as most people can only rent a certain amount of DVDs each month which allows for a regular profit. Unlimited streaming is the opposite, as Netflix will never pay what they can get from Blockbuster, Amazon, or Hulu. Cable and Sat markets are the super premium bonuses.

    Price goes up? Who gives a shit. Not by much. Still the best bang for your buck short of out and out piracy. Nobody talks about their TV and Movie selection right now. Pretty extensive and unlimited.

    When Netflix stops having s

I find you lack of faith in the forth dithturbing. - Darse ("Darth") Vader

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