From a small DVD delivery service to the world leader among streaming platforms. For today, Netflix streams approximately 250 million hours of video every day in 190 countries, with approximately 209 million subscribers. Let’s take a closer look at this popular online cinema.
Netflix is primarily a streaming video service with tens of thousands of movies and TV shows, but it wasn’t always so. The current company’s CEO, Reed Hastings, partnered with Mark Randolph in 1997 to mail out DVDs of films. The website for orders was started in 1998, and two years later, the piece-by-piece video-disc rental was canceled and a monthly subscription remained only – which is now the basis of the company’s business. The Internet video library appeared in 2007. At that time, Netflix had about 7 million subscribers in the United States, and now it has 209 million subscribers worldwide, including 72 million in the United States and Canada.
Netflix is a video content library of various genres of films, documentaries, and TV series, both existing before Netflix and created by the company itself. Netflix Originals include either movies/series of its own production or ones with streaming rights bought by Netflix. These are TV shows like Orange Is the New Black, House of Cards, Nailed It!, etc., which you can watch only on Netflix.
One of Netflix’s distinctive features is that new series are released not one by one episode once a week (like, say, HBO products), but a whole season is put on a platform in a single day, simultaneously around the world, in different languages.
How Does Netflix Work
For a flat monthly fee, subscribers can watch any content at any time from any platform they choose. Netflix works on a wide variety of devices: smartphones and tablets (Android, iOS), computers (Windows, macOS), TVs (Smart TV), set-top boxes, game consoles (Nintendo Wii, Nintendo Wii U, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PlayStation Vita, Nintendo 3DS, PlayStation 4, Xbox One), DVD and Blu-ray players.
And the best thing is that the browsing synchronization is supported across all devices. You can watch 30 minutes of a movie on TV, then launch Netflix on your smartphone while continue watching from the same moment, and finish it in the browser on your laptop.
Video quality varies according to the movie and can go up to Ultra HD (4K) resolution. But the high dynamic range video support in two formats (HDR10 + and Dolby Vision) is that what really impressive.
The service has a convenient search by genre, popularity, and new products. Netflix has content for kids too. Parents can create an account for their child, which will filter out films marked 16+ and above.
How Much Does Netflix Cost
The service provides three Netflix subscription options, which differ in the set of available functions:
- Basic plan – $8.99. Includes the ability to watch programs on only one screen at a time, an unlimited number of shows, and the ability to cancel at any time. Streaming comes in standard definition;
- Standard plan – $13.99. Includes simultaneous 2 screens watching and HD quality. Most users choose this tier as the most suitable option;
- Premium plan – $17.99. Tier without any restrictions. Allows watching your favorite TV shows in HD and Ultra-HD quality with playback of up to 4 screens simultaneously.
New subscribers can test the program for one month and choose the appropriate type of subscription. You can use the service in maximum quality, upload videos, or watch online. You will be able to check the amount and variety of content, see how the picture looks in HDR10 or Dolby Vision (if your device supports these formats).
As seen above, the Netflix streaming pricing is reasonable. It does not exceed the price of the usual cable TV packages. Plus, you get guaranteed high-quality content that is always interesting to watch and not a hundred different channels with eternal advertisements and incomprehensible programs.