Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) CEO Reed Hastings made an audacious statement when he said the days for free-to-air TV are numbered. He went on to compare traditional TV with a horse, stating that riding a horse was good before there were cars. Hastings said broadcast TV will last until 2030.
Will Netflix CEO’s predictions be true?
Hastings made the comments during a November visit to Mexico to promote the company’s international expansion efforts.
“It’s kind of like the horse, you know, the horse was good until we had the car,” he said. “The age of broadcast TV will probably last until 2030.”
Netflix crossed the 53.1 million subscriber mark across the world, and it is interesting to see how the streaming company is giving sleepless nights to TV industry majors, which are applying every trick up their sleeves to stop Netflix’s successful sprint. Many moves have been tried, like AMC Theaters dropping the proposal of showing Netflix’s Crouching Dragon sequel, the row over ISP interconnections, or Australia’s attempts to outlaw VPNs.
There are possibilities that Hastings’ predictions will come true because there have been substantial increases in efforts to relax licensing rights for live-TV streaming, which will give rise to the number of streaming services from major players such as DISH Network Corp (NASDAQ:DISH), HBO, Showtime, Sony Corp (ADR) (NASDAQ:SNE) (TYO:6758) and Verizon Communications Inc (NYSE:VZ). Pioneer Netflix and early adopter Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) are also making efforts to develop original content, such as Netflix’s House of Cards and Amazon’s Transparent.
Nielson’s finding won’t be relevant
Replying to the WSJ report that research firm Nielsen will track Netflix viewership, Hastings said Nielsen’s recent announcement that it will measure Netflix and Amazon viewers is “not very relevant” for the reason that the research company is not equipped with techniques to track phone and tablet viewing specifically.
“There’s so much viewing that happens on a mobile phone or an iPad that [Nielsen won’t] capture,” he said.
Last month, The WSJ reported that Nielsen will use the content’s audio on televisions to identify shows, but it will not include mobile devices. It is believed that even without mobile and tablet data, the findings could have a big impact on negotiations for the streaming rights for Netflix and Amazon.