Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) is gearing up for more direct competition from Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN), predicting in a letter to investors that the Jeff Bezos-led giant will launch a standalone streaming subscription video service that will undercut Netflix's current pricing. Netflix anticipates that the new service, offered as a free add-on for its US$79-per-year Prime service, will also be sold to everyone else for less than the $8 per month Netflix charges for its own subscription streaming service. (See Amazon Fires Shot at Netflix's Bow .)
Netflix's streaming subscriptions bounced back big time in the fourth quarter, but its DVD business is still struggling. The company lost 2.76 million DVD subs in the period, causing some to wonder if Netflix will bug out of that business sooner than predicted. (See Netflix Subs Rebound in Q4 .)
In the latest round of the my-broadband-is-bigger-than-your-broadband battle between Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) and Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ), the MSO said it would clarify advertisements claiming that it provides Internet speeds "3X faster than FiOS." At the behest of Verizon, the National Advertising Division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus recommended that Cablevision do a better job disclosing that the claim is a comparison of its 50Mbit/s Docsis 3.0 service with FiOS's entry-level 15Mbit/s tier, notes Multichannel news.
Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) has tapped Amy Lynch as area VP for the MSO's California Southwest Bay region. She's the first woman to oversee operations in the MSO's Silicon Valley and San Francisco peninsula, a territory Comcast calls one of its "most strategic." Lynch most recently served as GM of Comcast's Colorado Mountains division and AVP of Comcast's Northern Colorado territory.
Shalom TV started off as a video-on-demand (VoD)-only service, but will launch a live, linear channel available in standard- and high-definition on Feb. 1. Its VoD service currently reaches 43 million homes in the U.S. and Canada.