256 page FCC filing lays out case for rejection of merger
Video streamer Netflix has formally objected to the Comcast and Time Warner Cable merger, with a complaint filed with the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) earlier this week. The streamer believes that the merger hampers consumer access to data, and "would set up an ecosystem that calls into question what we have to date taken for granted: that a consumer who pays for connectivity to the Internet will be able to get the content she requests."
Deal marks fourth major deal with Internet service providers
Netflix has signed a new peering deal, this time with Time Warner Cable. The deal now gives the video streamer interconnection deals with Internet service providers that cover about 68 percent of all the broadband customers in the US. Notably, the 32 percent it doesn't have deals with are smaller providers - largely carriers that have pro-net neutrality views, and haven't been found to limit or slow down Netflix traffic for users.
Agency asks for interconnection agreements for understanding, regulation depends on discovery
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is looking into six additional Internet service providers (ISP) and content providers over interconnecting and peering agreements, according to reports. An official spoke to Ars Technica after it filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request seeking information on the Netflix peering deals with Verizon and Comcast. The news comes after FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler announced in June that the agency would be investigating such agreements.
Agreement dates back to May, but wasn't planned to be announced to the public
In the quest to give its users a better streaming experience, Netflix has reached an agreement with AT&T to gain a direct network connection. The two companies revealed that they entered into a peering deal after news broke from anonymous sources that the movie service reached another streaming arrangement. Previously, Netflix had worked out similar deals with Verizon and Comcast.
Company planning mass European expansion in September
Netflix is the latest company to release its quarterly financial results. Touting expansion to 50 million subscribers in the US, the company reports $1.15 billion in revenue from streaming, adding 1.7 million subscribers in a quarter. Profit came in at $212 million, nearly triple that of the second quarter of 2013.
Netflix updates Apple TV channel, adds 'Post-Play' feature
Television and movie streaming service Netflix is updating its integrated app for Apple TV. Its popular web and iPad feature "Post-Play" has been brought to the Apple TV, allowing users a brief countdown once a show's credits begin rolling, followed by automatic playing of the next episode in a series - unless otherwise interrupted. AppleInsider has speculated that though the Post-Play feature was found on multiple Apple TV units during testing, it is likely that the update has yet to be fully released to all customers.
Google Now reminders can be created via Google Search
Google is now allowing for the creation of reminders in Google Search. Similar to the vocal method using Google Voice Search and Google Now on smartphones, Google Operating System reports users can set a reminder by typing "Add reminder" or "Create Reminder" in the search box. A reminder card with extra settings will then appear, with a "Remind me on Google Now" link finalizing the notification.
Verizon congestion fix claimed to be cheap, simple, completed in five minutes
The ongoing feud between Netflix and Verizon has stepped up, with a transit provider weighing in over Verizon's connection congestion claims. Level 3 claims the high utilization of the connection between Verizon and itself is Verizon's fault, as the Internet service provider is actively refusing to upgrade its connections at the point of the apparent congestion.
Claims majority of Verizon network is stable, Netflix connections as weak point
The battle between Verizon and Netflix over connectivity continues, with Verizon completely refusing to accept any of the blame for slow streams. The latest feud installment involves a Verizon blog post claiming its network operations team found no congestion on the Verizon network in a recent review, laying the blame squarely at Netflix's connection decisions instead of with itself.
Steaming service ending API to focus on other efforts, eight applications partner directly
Netflix announced last week that it would be ending its public API program in an effort to better focus their efforts internally. The company stated that any requests through the public API after November 14 will be unable to access any content. Netflix announced a year ago that it would no longer be issuing new API keys to developers, or accept new affiliates.
Peering deals seem to have little lasting effect on Netflix user speeds
After a bevy of consumer complaints were filed with the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) against Verizon and Comcast regarding Netflix "throttling," the regulatory agency has begun looking into the problem. The FCC demanded, and has received, the terms of peering deals that Netflix made with both Internet giants, and will examine the issue to see if there is anything that can be done on behalf of consumers.
General counsel for Netflix sets congestion blame squarely with Verizon
The war of words between Netflix and Verizon over Internet service provider (ISP) performance issues is continuing, a new leaked letter reveals. A response from Netflix General Counsel David Hyman to his counterpart at Verizon firmly pins the connection blame on the ISP, after receiving a cease and desist letter over Netflix's congestion warning messages.
Verizon drops places in latest Netflix speed rankings
Netflix will soon stop its customized error message warning of issues with specific Internet service providers (ISP), the video streaming company has advised. At the same time as releasing ISP speed results for May, Netflix states it will stop the customized notifications when its "small scale test" concludes on June 16th, before deciding whether or not it will extend the practice to other markets and ISPs.
NVIDIA's Tegra Note 7 tablet OTA update includes streaming of Netflix in up to 1080p
Nvidia's Tegra Note 7 tablet has received an OTA update, allowing for streaming of Netflix HD content up to 1080p on the device. The Tegra Note 7 tablet features a seven-inch HD display, with enough battery capacity for up to 10 hours of video streaming. The tablet is one of the first Android devices available that can stream Netflix in high-definition. Available with a 16GB storage capacity, the Tegra Note 7 is priced at $200.
Provider wants a list of users sent claim, in addition to halting further messages
After Verizon's statement regarding congestion accusations levied by Netflix, the provider has apparently taken a more serious approach to the issue. A report from Reuters indicates that Verizon has sent Netflix a cease-and-desist letter, asking that the company put an end the messages posted on users' screens. As part of the notice, Verizon has also asked for a list of customers on Verizon's network the notices were sent to.
Claims warning is attempt to shift connectivity blame from Netflix to Verizon
Verizon has fought back against reports of a Netflix error message informing users "The Verizon network is crowded right now." The error message, which directly blames the Internet service provider (ISP) for the slow connection has been described by Verizon as a PR stunt and an attempt to shift blame away from itself, claiming the error message "is not only inaccurate, it is deliberately misleading."
Warning message blaming Verizon for slow connection being tested by Netflix
Netflix is testing out messages warning users of Internet service providers with poor network connectivity, with the first target being Verizon. The video service has started to offer up an error page advising Verizon subscribers of high levels of congestion on the network, in what appears to be the latest in the net neturality-related spat between Internet services and telecommunications providers.
Possible thanks to updated Safari
People watching Netflix in OS X Yosemite will now be able to stream video via HTML5 instead of Silverlight, according to an official blog post. The service says it has been "working closely with Apple" to implement HTML5 Premium Video Extensions in Yosemite's edition of Safari. This allows viewers to start watching videos instantly, instead of having to install the Silverlight plugin first, as in OS X Mavericks.
Google takes stance against Comcast, Verizon charging for 'last mile' access
Google will not charge Internet services to host their content at Google Fiber locations, it has revealed. A Google Fiber blog post states the Internet service provider will provide free colocation at its Fiber facilities for services like Netflix, rather than following the lead of Comcast and Verizon in charging for direct access to the last mile connection to the customer.
Google rolls out hands-free Voice Search to all desktop Chrome versions
Google has started to roll out its hands-free Voice Search to all desktop Chrome users. Initially released in the beta version of Chrome in February, the option allows Chrome users to start a voice search from a new tab or from Google.com by stating "OK Google" followed by the search query. Engadget reports the feature is currently available in the United States with browsers set to US English, but it could add support for other languages in the near future.
Wheeler says commission will examine peering deals, believes in open Internet
During a House of Representatives hearing on Tuesday, Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler said that the commission would be looking into peering deals between content providers and ISPs that have recently been made. The arrangements, such as some high-profile ones between Netflix and providers such as Comcast and Verizon, have been a part of the net neutrality debate since Wheeler's proposal was first speculated on, and are seen by some as legal blackmail even as proponents argue that players such as Netflix abuse existing infrastructure.
Netflix reveals plans to expand into six more European countries
Netflix is expanding its presence in Europe to include six more countries, the company has revealed. Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, Belgium, and Luxembourg will receive access to the streaming video service later this year, with content and pricing for each region to be announced in the future. The new additions will likely increase Netflix's international subscriber count upward from the 12.7 million it already has in the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands, and Scandinavia. By contrast, the US has 35.7 million subscribers.
E-mails sent to existing Netflix subscribers advising of price freeze
Netflix has started to raise its subscription rates, just as it previously hinted during its recent financial results. After an initial test increase in Ireland, the video streaming service has started to send out e-mails to customers about the increase, which will be affecting new subscribers only, while existing users will continue to receive the service at its current price for the immediate future.
Meetings intended to try and hammer out differences between FCC, ISPs, Netflix
Netflix was reportedly in discussions with US Federal Communications Commission personnel this week, expressing deep concern to Chairman Tom Wheeler's poorly-received "net neutrality" proposal. Sources familiar with the matter allegedly met with the FCC to discuss the proposal several times over the course of the week, attempting to steer discourse on the matter to something closer to Netflix's idea of an open Internet, with equal treatment for everybody's traffic.
Deal mentioned by Verizon CEO, confirmed by Netflix
Following Netflix's controversial data peering deal with Comcast, the media streamer has apparently signed a similar deal with Verizon. Netflix comfirmed the rumored deal with a brief statement, saying that the company has "reached an interconnect arrangement with Verizon that we hope will improve performance for our joint customers over the coming months."
Atlantic, Grande, RCN customers gaining Netflix on TiVo cable boxes
Customers of Atlantic Broadband, Grande Communications, and RCN will be seeing the Netflix app on their cable set-top boxes in the near future. The Washington Post reports the three cable companies will add the Netflix app to TiVo boxes they have supplied to approximately 500,000 customers from April 28th, and will allow them to watch the streaming video service without switching away from the cable box to another device.
New users will need to pay more, existing Netflix subscribers keep current rates
Netflix is planning to raise the price of its service to new members in the near future, among other changes, the company has revealed as part of its quarterly financial results. Following a limited increase in Ireland, the streaming video service is now looking to increase the subscription fee by one to two dollars, depending on the country.
High-resolution Netflix streams require 2014 smart TVs, fast Internet connection
Netflix has started to stream content at Ultra High Definition (4K), starting with original series House of Cards and a number of nature documentaries. The plans, which it first revealed last year and promoted at CES, provides owners of 4K televisions with more programming, though there are a number of caveats that potential viewers must work around.
Fire TV set-top box offers voice search by microphone in remote control
Amazon has launched its new streaming media player, the Fire TV, at its New York media event today. Part of the retailer's push into the streaming video marketplace and building upon the success of its Kindle tablets, the Amazon Fire TV is a small set-top box that allows users access to TV shows and movies watch video from Amazon's Instant Video, as well as other services.
Remarks in response to Netflix concerns of ISPs demanding payment for traffic
The FCC is apparently not going to examine Netflix CEO Reed Hastings' call for a wider net neutrality. Shutting down the discussion, an FCC spokesperson said that the matter was not up for consideration in the upcoming Open Internet proceeding. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler noted (incorrectly in the eyes of critics) that arrangements such as between Netflix and Comcast are "not a net-neutrality issue."
Post in response to remarks made by Netflix CEO
The Netflix and large ISP peering arrangement war of words is heating up. After Netflix CEO Reed Hastings' remarks yesterday, AT&T has also penned a missive in which it claims that ISPs who follow strong net neutrality provisions -- giving relatively cost-free data to the streamers -- is nothing less than suggesting "that people who don't subscribe to Netflix should nonetheless pay for Netflix."
Remarks are first net neutrality comments since January court ruling
Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has penned a harshly-worded post on the official Netflix blog, and has blasted the state of US net neutrality, and in part, peering deals that the video streamer has struck with large ISPs. Hastings says that deals are in place, with more coming, but the toll to ISPs is being paid "reluctantly" and only to "ensure a high quality member experience."
Agreement claimed to involve Netflix renting server space in Telenor data center
Netflix may be making more agreements with Internet service providers (ISP) to prevent throttling, and is apparently doing so outside of the United States. A deal between Netflix and Telenor of Norway is reported to be similar to one between the streaming service and Comcast, with Netflix said to be placing its servers within the ISP's own data centers.
CEO calls deals necessary for survival of streaming services like Netflix
In an interview with CNBC, Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam noted that he was fairly certain that he would strike a similar deal as Comcast's with Netflix, making the streaming video purveyor pay for bandwidth, at least in part. McAdam called the Netflix deal with Comcast a "good thing," which allows for funding necessary infrastructure maintenance and build-outs.
Content streaming company to have direct access to ISP network
In a report from the Wall Street Journal, Netflix has entered into an agreement with Comcast to end throttling of bandwidth by the provider. Netflix customers have been plagued by declining streams since an appeals court ruled the FCC's net neutrality rules were invalid. The move comes as a surprise as the FCC is currently working on new strategies to keep the companies from treating internet traffic in an unfair manner. Netflix has agreed to pay Comcast an undisclosed sum in order to have a direct link to the ISP.
Motorola to hold hour-long sale with $100 discount on Moto X
Motorola will be offering the Moto X at a discount again, though unlike earlier offers, the company is cutting the price for just one hour. Android Central spotted a series of tweets from Motorola warning of an off-contract Moto X sale on January 27th that will run from 3pm to 4pm Eastern time, with the $100 discount bringing the price down to $299. Anyone missing out on the offer will be able to receive a $70 discount until February 14th.
International expansion still dragging down bottom line, improvement in sight
Internet movie streaming service Netflix has announced its quarterly earnings. The company continues to be dragged down by a loss overseas, but still managed to earn $0.79 per share. With over 44 million customers worldwide, the company pulled down $1.18 billion in revenue in the fourth quarter, with $48 million of that being net income.
Project said to be in early stages
Amazon is reportedly working on a new video service that will mimic traditional cable and broadcast models by focusing on live streaming programming, unnamed sources have told The Wall Street Journal. The project is said to be in early stages, though the sources claim the company has already reached out to at least three major content owners to begin discussions for potential licensing deals.
Streaming video on demand subscribers continue to rise
Streaming video services such as Netflix and Hulu could in some cases be eroding the customer base of premium television broadcasters, according to a new report. NPD Group figures for the period between March 2012 and August 2013 show that the number of subscribers to HBO, Showtime, and other channels have dropped from 38 percent of US households to 32 percent.
Netflix growth turns into big cash for Hastings
Netflix's ongoing growth will result in a considerable financial boon for Reed Hastings, CEO of the video streaming service. Following a year in which the company's shares quadrupled in value, the AP reports that Hastings will see a 50 percent pay bump for 2014. A recent regulatory filing shows Hastings' annual salary will jump from $2 million to $3 million in 2014.
Netflix trials single-stream, standard definition tier with some customers
Netflix is testing a possible new price plan for customers that do not require a HD stream. The new tier spotted by Adweek offers the user a single stream at standard definition for $6.99 per month, $1 cheaper than the normal two-stream standard and HD version typically offered by the service. Netflix has since confirmed its tests, advising "Not all people will see this option and it may not be something we ever offer generally."
Problem likely due to high demand; cause not publicly revealed
With so many people engaging in post-Christmas celebrations, there are scattered reports of service outages or other problems due to unusually high use for a weekday or because an usually large number of consumers happened to call upon a service at the same time. Netflix on Thursday saw an issue that caused its service to be unavailable for a little over an hour or so, interrupting evening viewing plans for many but quickly resolved.
We really meant to get this to you earlier but kept putting it off
The last days before Christmas are a special time of year, full of family gatherings and carolers for some, and panic racing thoughts for others. Those latter holiday sentiments, of course, are for those among us who neglected to get all of our shopping done. Maybe you managed to secure a flight back home at the last minute, or maybe you just decided to forgive Uncle Bobby for that incident on Thanksgiving. No matter the cause, you've probably got a few last-minute acquisitions to make, and the gift budget may have already bled into the rest of your budget. Have no fear, though, Electronista is here with the Last Minute Edition of our Holiday Gadget Gift Guide, so there's no need to grab those Starbucks gift cards in bulk quite yet, as there's still time to get folks the tech gifts they'll love.
4K content creation to help bolster small Ultra HD streaming catalog
Netflix will be offering some of its home-grown content in 4K in the future, the video streaming service has revealed. The second season of House of Cards will be shot in the format and will be available to stream to users sometime in 2014, though this is not a sign that the company will be offering the high-resolution option to users for all of its content.
Netflix adds multiple user profiles to Android app
Netflix on Saturday brought its Android app closer to parity with its web offering, bringing the ability to host multiple user profiles on a single device. The move gives greater content control to parents, who can now generate a separate user profile for children on shared Android devices. The new feature comes a few months after Netflix began offering it for iOS devices and Apple TV units in August.
Image-heavy redesign adds more detail to show recommendations
Netflix has updated a number of its apps for smart TVs and set-top boxes, bringing them all under the same new uniform interface. The new UI heading to the Roku, Smart TV apps, Blu-Ray players, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 aims to provide more detail about potential shows, using large images and more personalized recommendations.
Provides free six-month subscription to higher-tier cable customers
British cable operator Virgin Media has completed its trial of offering Netflix on 40,000 of its set-top boxes, opening it up to all customers. Subscribers with a TiVo box, in over 1.8 million UK homes, will not only gain access to the streaming video service on the device, but will also gain six months of Netflix service for free to Premiere or VIP Collection customers.
Video streaming sites huge, more than half of peak traffic
Video streaming services Netflix and YouTube together account for half of the downstream traffic on the Internet in North America during peak hours. A new study pointed out by Cnet. New numbers from the twice-yearly Global Internet Phenomena Report found that Netflix and YouTube took up 50.31 percent of downstream Internet traffic during peak usage hours. Of that, Netflix is by far the larger contributor, accounting for nearly a third of all peak North American traffic on its own.
Video rental service to breathe its last by January
Dish Network, parent company of Blockbuster, announced on Wednesday that the video rental service would be ending both its retail and mail DVD distribution operations by early-January 2014. Blockbuster will close its roughly 300 remaining U.S.-based retail locations and distribution centers in early January. The Blockbuster By Mail DVD distribution service, set to expire in mid-December, will continue to serve existing customers until that time.
Ultra HD content appears on Netflix
Netflix recently expanded its content offerings to include Ultra HD video, GigaOm reported Friday. The new offerings are solely content that Netflix uses for internal testing, but their emergence online confirms that the company is looking to add 4K content to its offerings. The popular video streaming service reportedly hopes to roll out Ultra HD video streaming for customers with compatible devices some time in the next year.