Here's hoping Netflix passing HBO on subscriber numbers is good for NZ

netflix-logoHBO has long been seen as the premiere content provider in the US bringing us shows like The Soprano’s, Entourage and Game of Thrones to name a few.  However, as we know, the landscape is changing and there is a real battle for dominance in the digital space.  News out today has it that Netflix, the online streaming service, has now surpassed HBO in subscriber numbers after they announced to shareholders that they had 29.93 million people paying them $7.99 a month for movies, documentaries and TV shows.  It is believed that HBO has 28.7 million.

While initially providing an on demand service, Netflix has now branched out and is producing its own content with shows like Orange is the New Black and the Emmy Nominated House of Cards.

I love this quote from Ted Sarandos, Netflix’s chief content officer. “Neflix’s goal is to become HBO faster than HBO can become us”.  I seriously hope this can happen.

Netflix has avoided New Zealand simply because of the dominance of Sky here and the monopoly they have on content.  In doing so, the content that they’re producing is ending up with traditional broadcasters who are using the usual delay and bury programming.

With the growing subscriber numbers in the US, one can only hope that this means more original content and, more specifically, a reason to set up shop in New Zealand anyway.

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About the author

Regan is one of the co-founders of Throng Media.
If they're on, I'm usually watching Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, 24, Battlestar Galactica, The X Factor, Survivor, House of Cards, Mad Men and the NRL.
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  • Grabate

    I constantly see paid subscriptions to Netflix on peoples PC’s and PS3’s. I’m willing to bet there are more people “illegally” subscribed to Netflix in NZ than Quickflicks.

    • Preston

      Yeah it’s easy to access netflix in NZ. You still have to pay netflix for it of course, which you can do legitimately with your NZ credit card. I don’t really see that as being illegal.

      • Jeseta

        Is that by using one of those location blocker software thinga-ma-jigs?

        • Preston

          Yes, you can download a free unblocker plug-in for your browser that allows you to access certain US sites, google around for it.

  • SomeoneWhoKnows

    Sorry Regan, but you’re slightly misinformed in your opinion piece. It’s a bit of a stretch to say Netflix avoids this market because of SKY. Did you know that excluding Netflix-commissioned series, like House of Cards or Orange is The New Black (which do premiere on Netflix in territories where Netflix is available) that most series and movies on Netflix come after the US pay-window premieres? I.E. The bulk of their content is library content. Ex-network shows or ex-Pay TV movies. Did you also know that HBO makes NONE of its content available to Netflix in any territory Netflix is operating? So you could never expect to see say a Game Of Thrones on ANY Netflix platform. HBO and Netflix are very rabid competitors. Did you also know that Netflix’s key original shows of the last 2 years (House Of Cards and Orange Is the New Black) are exclusively licensed by MediaWorks and TVNZ respectively. This is SKY’s fault because….?