Netflix CEO Reed Hastings: Amazon Prime’s A Great Service. I’m A Member.By: Chris Crum - April 22, 2014
Netflix held its quarterly earnings call last evening. Here’s a look at the financials.
Many things were discussed on the call, including competition and the general relationship Netflix has with Amazon.
“Prime’s a great service,” said Netflix CEO Reed Hastings. “I’m a prime member, and most Netflix employees are Prime members, and it’s coming across to most people in our society as very complimentary to Netflix. People look at them as multiple channels. You saw that Amazon included us on the Fire TV, and of course we’ve been before on the Kindle Fires, and it’s a great relationship all around where we’ve got unique content. They’ve also got some unique content. They’re also doing originals, and there’s multiple networks out there. It’s very much not a zero sum game, and we’re building this ecosystem together that’s about Internet video, and the more players there are in Internet video, the bigger that ecosystem gets, and the big theme is Internet video is taking share away from linear video, and so we’re all participating in that transformation.”
Last week, Amazon announced some new partners for the voice search feature on its Amazon Fire TV platform. Netflix was noticeably absent from the list.
Asked about this, Hastings responded, “Amazon’s been pretty straight forward about treating that platform as an open platform, and we definitely want to be in voice search, and we will be in voice search. We’re just still working on the mechanics of it, so there’s no fundamental issue. It’s just some timing and scheduling things that came together. I wish we could’ve made the initial launch date, but it’s definitely something that will come out this year.”
Amazon also came up in a letter from Hastings and Netflix CFO David Wells to shareholders released on Monday. In that, the two said:
In Q1, Amazon changed strategies in the UK and Germany, closing LoveFilm as a streaming brand to compete with Netflix. They have repurposed their content deals to serve Amazon Prime Instant Video in the UK and Germany, and are investing in creating awareness of this new model. Amazon is not currently offering subscription video within Prime in Canada, France, Italy, Spain or Japan. They may choose to expand Prime Instant Video or to focus on tuning their three existing Prime Instant Video markets: U.S., UK and Germany. Since much of the content on Netflix and Amazon Prime (as well as Hulu in the U.S.) is mutually exclusive, many consumers see value in subscribing to all three networks.
In general, we continue to believe that our biggest long-term competitor for entertainment time remains the MVPDs improving through TV Everywhere, as they are doing with HBO Go.
Netflix recently poked fun at Amazon’s Prime Air service (the drones) with this video:
Image via YouTube