Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA) says it now considers Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) as its competitor in an attempt to establish its point that it needs to acquire Time Warner Cable Inc (NYSE:TWC) to expand on the national scale and compete with digital video competitors. Now the company points out that even after the deal with Time Warner, it will have fewer subscribers than the streaming company.
Comcast, Netflix not direct competitors
Brian Roberts, chairman and CEO of Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA) spoke on a panel at the Cable Show, saying that the company will be able to add 7 million net customers after acquiring Time Warner Cable Inc (NYSE:TWC) and parting ways with Charter Communications, Inc. (NYSE:CHTR). After adding 7 million, the number will total 30 million subscribers, and Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) has over 35 million U.S. subscribers, noted Roberts. The merger will give “the industry a better opportunity to have a footprint regionally and hopefully nationally,” Roberts said.
Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA) and Netflix are not direct competitors, as they offer different kinds of content, and Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) is not an alternative for the broad programming available on pay TV. Also Comcast has no alternative for Netflix’s Streampix, however, it is bundled with TV and offers less content.
Comcast views internet firms as rivals
Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA) said in a filing with the FCC that Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX), Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s YouTube, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s iTunes and Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN), which offer streaming video content services, are potential rivals of the company. The company stated that in an evolving video industry, streaming video content companies have thrived, and there is no reason a cable company should not evolve, especially one that has shown its willingness to increase competition through innovation and investment.
“Added scale will make that innovation go faster and that investment go farther,” said the filing
Ever since video-capable devices were launched in the market, Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA) has tried to offer higher technology products to deliver more TV content on more screens. At present, a total of 50 live channels are streamed outside the home, and 25,000 videos-on-demand are offered on various platforms. The company could not do so 24 months ago and even 12 months ago, according to Robert.
A couple of days back, Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) closed a deal with Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) to enhance the quality and speed of its streaming content. Back in February, the online video streaming company reached a similar deal with Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA) to speed up TV shows and movies.