In the streaming video technology space, it just got majorly, majorly real: Netflix and Disney have gone exclusive.
Netflix Inc. (NFLX) and The Walt Disney Company (DIS) today announced a new multi-year licensing agreement that will make Netflix the exclusive U.S. subscription television service for first-run live-action and animated feature films from The Walt Disney Studios.
It’s kind of tempting to say the press release ended with “EAT IT, AMAZON!”, but it just went on to describe a few terms of the deal, like Netflix getting Disney’s back catalog in the near future.
So, exactly how great is this news for Netflix? Pretty great. Exclusivity doesn’t start until 2016, but anything after that point means Netflix gets it all first for a fairly generous window. Which is nice, but the real score here is the fact that Disney movies are now headed to Netflix en masse.
It’s true that some Disney movies, like the Marvel movies, have been on Netflix for a while. But this will add an entirely new dimension to Netflix’s offerings. Basically, if you have kids and want Disney movies legally on the Internet, Netflix is now officially the only game in town.
More to the point, it also puts pressure on the other studios. Expect a wave of partnering up as people realize that, hey, video streaming is not actually going to go away!