Netflix makes a lot of money streaming video, but it can save a bundle if ISPs will sign up for and use its software Open Connect. Open Connect basically removes a major cost component out of streaming video, but not everybody is interested in saving Netflix money. So Netflix is hoping to make their customers push them into it with 3D and higher-definition video.
Netflix announced at CES that customers will be able to get streaming 3D movies and higher definition signals than ever, but only if Open Connect is set up:
“Leading-edge ISPs around the world such as Cablevision, Virgin Media, British Telecom, Telmex, Telus, TDC, GVT, among many others, are already participating in Open Connect to provide the highest-possible quality Netflix service to consumers,” Netflix Chief Reed Hastings said in a statement. “Our goal is to have all of our members served by Open Connect as soon as possible.”
It’s fairly safe to say that certain cable companies will not be taking Netflix up on this particular opportunity. But it does set up a question of how long they can hold out. After all, the customer is really the one who gets a vote on this, and it’s really only a matter of time before they overpower even the most obstinate executive.
That said, if you’ve got Comcast, don’t expect this to happen until you’re at the door with torches.