Netflix not doing all that badly

John Moe Oct 25, 2011

Fine, I’ll be the one to go against the grain. I’ll never claim to understand the stock market but I think all this talk of Netflix being doomed is kind of silly.

When the company split off the subscriptions to DVD last summer (a model that still holds even though there’s no “Qwikster”), it forecasted losing 600,000 customers. It knew the backlash was coming but was willing to put up with it in exchange for the more efficient system it saw coming down the road with fewer discs and more streaming.

In these results just reported, the company lost 800,000 subscribers, which was more than expected but considering it still has almost 24 million subscribers, it’s not like everyone jumped ship all at once. And a big chunk of those lost subscribers are people walking away from DVDs, just as it was foretold.

As for those who ditched the streaming, well, like I said on Marketplace Morning Report this morning, it’s easy to do, you can do it capriciously, it’s not like quitting Bank of America.

But! Netflix is still available on the most number of devices, it still has the best selection of any streaming service, and it just expanded into England, having previously expanded to a bunch of other countries. With all it has going for it, along with 24 million customers, I fail to understand how it’s not well positioned in the long run, the PR blunder of Qwikster notwithstanding.

There’s a lot happening in the world.  Through it all, Marketplace is here for you. 

You rely on Marketplace to break down the world’s events and tell you how it affects you in a fact-based, approachable way. We rely on your financial support to keep making that possible. 

Your donation today powers the independent journalism that you rely on. For just $5/month, you can help sustain Marketplace so we can keep reporting on the things that matter to you.