Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) confirmed that it had entered in a deal with AT&T to offer direct connection from video service to the broadband customers. The company is already involved in a similar partnership with Comcast and Verizon. AT&T deal is expected to offer better speed and faster streaming speed to the Netflix customers.
Netflix roping in ISPs
In its statement, the streaming company confirmed that it has inked a deal with AT&T in May and since then are working jointly to direct the additional interconnect capacity towards enhancing the viewing experience of the mutual subscribers.
“We’re now beginning to turn up the connections, a process that should be complete in the coming days,” informed Netflix.
The video streaming company is trying to strike deals with the biggest internet service providers in the United States to access their network directly to save its customers the frustration in streaming the high-definition videos. Netflix, recently, released its updated video quality report that ranks the speed of the ISPs. The report shows that AT&T network has been very slow, and Verizon has not improved much since pairing the agreement with Netflix.
Citing sources familiar with the negotiations, Mashable was the first-tech news site to report the deal. There were no details over the terms of the deal, but most probably they would be parallel with the Comcast-Netflix deal in February. Netflix paid Comcast to directly connect delivery network to home broadband subscribers of the streaming company. In April, the video service agreed to a similar deal with Verizon.
Net Neutrality a concern
Netflix-Comcast deal was dragged upto several months over the issue that whether the streaming service company would pay Comcast for the direct connection. The dispute has been more visible in recent months with each blaming the other for degrade of services.
After the Federal Communications Commission’s ruled over the ways in which ISP can control traffic on the internet, Netflix has entered into a partnership with various Internet service provider. According to some consumer support groups, such agreements will disturb the Net Neutrality, which works to limit broadband providers from blocking access or discerning against Internet traffic travelling over their connections.
FCC stated that Netflix’s interconnection agreements with Internet service providers are not covered with the Net Neutrality policy. However, the government regulator said that it is acquiring more information on such partnerships to track what is happening on the Internet.