Saturday, September 24, 2011

Netflix Blunders

Reading the Internet lately, business analysts have been praising Netflix's decision to split its movie delivery service into two entities. (Reuters story.) One will be Netflix and will stream movies. The other will be Qwikster which will continue to mail DVD movies. Now all this comes after Netflix initially raised prices to be part of both streaming and the DVD mail service. To get Qwikster, you'll have to set up a separate account with them. And if you read articles on Qwikster, it's set up to either die or be sold.

I can't agree with the business analysts. While I agree that the future of viewing movies at home is going to be Internet streaming, the selection of movies for streaming isn't there yet. The advantage of Netflix was the huge library. If a certain movie wasn't available online, at least you could get it via the mail. Now if you look at Netflix right now, the selection is terrible without the DVD option. Try to get Casablanca (1943) or in my case, try to get Transformers (2007) on Netflix since I'm the only man on the planet that hasn't seen it. You have to go the DVD route which means I will have to open another account with Qwikster.

But is Netflix currently worth your money? I say, "sort of." At $7.99 a month, you don't' get much in movie selection. I mean many movies that are older than one year old aren't currently available. See Casablanca. There are some great films like Pulp Fiction (1995) or Patton (1970). But there seems to be more obscure movies like "The Cleaner" (2007) or the religious movies like "Marriage Retreat" (2011) starring Jeff Fahey and Victoria Jackson?! It's the lack of selection that will allow a competitor with a better online library AND a DVD service if the movie is not online to perhaps do to Neflix what it did to Blockbuster.

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