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Netflix CEO Deals Major Blow to BlackBerry

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While Netflix was bullish on Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 when that platform debuted in late 2010 with one of the first native apps, it’s taking a bearish approach on rival BlackBerry’s new BlackBerry 10 operating system. The streaming movie service says that it has no immediate plans to launch an app for the BlackBerry 10 platform at this time.

“We don’t currently support streaming on the BlackBerry, it’s a unique operating system you have to target, and unfortunately there’s just not enough volume for entertainment (apps),” Netflix CEO Reed Hastings told Canada’s CTV News. ”It’s a great device for getting work done but people don’t interact with it as an entertainment device the same way they do with say an iPhone or Android phone.”

nseries_black_front-1BlackBerry had announced three smartphones with the BlackBerry 10 operating system. A slate-oriented BlackBerry Z10 was announced first to combat Apple’s iPhone and popular Android flagships like the Samsung Galaxy and HTC One series devices. The BlackBerry Q10 comes with a professional look and a hardware QWERTY keyboard and more recently this month BlackBerry announced a mid-range Q5 smartphone, also with a keyboard.

The news that BlackBerry won’t be launching a native app to offer its subscription streaming video service will be a huge blow to BlackBerry and users of the BlackBerry 10 platform. The platform is one of the few remaining platforms that offers native Adobe Flash support and users can stream Flash-based videos from network TV sites or visit YouTube. BlackBerry also offers a video store for purchased content as well.

The Netflix service is currently available for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone users on mobile platforms.

Tech enthusiast in Silicon Valley enjoying the possibilities of ubiquitous connectivity, information sharing, and collaboration enabled by mobile broadband. You can contact Chuong on Twitter @chuongvision or search +chuongvision on Google+.

15 Comments

  1. Marc

    05/22/2013 at 5:28 am

    Sideloadable. See goodereader.

    • Lolz

      05/22/2013 at 5:43 am

      Why bother, if you want Android be smarter and get an Android. Wankers side load because they made a bad purchasing decision.

      • Trader John

        05/22/2013 at 8:16 am

        Why would I want to get an Android? Samsung’s GS4 is pre-loaded with 7GB of bloatware, which causes the it to lag. You buy a 16GB GS4 but only have 9GB left to load your apps. Oh, and Google still hasn’t figured out how to take the jerkiness out of scrolling.

        My Z10 doesn’t lag, and isn’t full of bloatware. And BB10 is smooth, very smooth… there is no jerkiness when swiping or scrolling. It can do everything an Android can, but better than Android.

  2. JP

    05/22/2013 at 5:42 am

    I had Netflicks on my TV for 2 months before I dumped it. Worthless programming is no match for my Z10,

    • Lolz

      05/22/2013 at 5:45 am

      Just because you’re too stupid and don’t understand how to get the “good” programming on Netflix, doesn’t mean others are too. The fact your a bbry owner does make it kinda self explanatory tho.

      • alserial

        05/22/2013 at 11:17 am

        Just cuz ur 2 stupid to figure out netflix is a huge rip off doesn’t mean others haven’t! The fact that u watch netflix on a smartphone screen is kinda self explanatory though….

  3. martin

    05/22/2013 at 6:09 am

    Netflix ceo comments are comparable to: people who said that they didn’t need a ford gas powered car because everyone had horses.

  4. Daniel

    05/22/2013 at 7:15 am

    Man doesn’t know the new BlackBerry 10 devices are every bit as competent as the best Androids as media/gaming platforms.

  5. t.dot resident

    05/22/2013 at 7:29 am

    Netflix CEO is myopic. In the evolution of mobile computing, Blackberry is very relevant. The spark has been lit and soon the masses will catch on…

  6. Martin

    05/22/2013 at 8:06 am

    I think the CEO is right (for now) but as others have said, he is being pretty myopic. The new BlackBerrys with the keyboard are not meant for watching videos and people who buy these BB’s probably don’t want netflix unless they are going to stream via HDMI or DLNA over the air to a bigger monitor or tablet. The Z10, is meant for people who are more into iPhone and Android type entertainment. However, the Z10 market in the US is still very small.
    Last month (mid-March) Google and Netflix announced availability on the Chromebooks. This is via Chrome and HTML5. This is the future for Netflix type apps because they then become OS independent and one ‘app’ works on everything. BB 10 has the best HTML 5 compliant browser (Chrome is second) so this is how Netflix is going to evolve this year. (Note: Skype will be going HTML5 soon with the standardization of WebRTC, etc., etc.,)
    Netflix has some serious competition ahead. They are doing some good things, like developing content But understanding the future of delivering content could crush them sooner than they think.

  7. Trader John

    05/22/2013 at 8:32 am

    Netflix has little to no effect on BlackBerry so there is no “blow” (major or minor) to deal with. Any BB10 owner who can’t live without Netflix can just side-load it. And pretty soon all 700,000 android apps will be available to BB10 via an app you install.

    I think Netflix is making a mistake by ignoring BB10. Their argument that BB is only for business and not media consumption, is wrong. I haven’t cancelled my Netflix subscription because the side-loaded app works quite well.

    I will not forget the CEO’s snub… Netflix has no competition for now… but when new player start offering the same streaming services, I’ll jump ship (as many others will do).

    • alserial

      05/22/2013 at 11:13 am

      Good point. I don;t have Netflix, cuz i never found a use for it, but I would be tempted to sign up to a competitor when and if one appeared.

  8. Greggore

    05/22/2013 at 11:54 am

    omg, really Lolz? why the hell would I get a POS Android anything…maybe as an MP3 player LMAO!.

  9. Greggore

    05/22/2013 at 11:57 am

    Cancelled mine too yesterday. Not that I use it much and why the heck would anyone watch TV \ Movies on a phone anyways. What I don’t like is how US companies are trying to black list BB and it really won’t make a difference. The US is no longer the dominant market they used to be, and the media to corporate mentality is to support “made in america” products. But what they don’t get is that Apple products are made in China, Samsung…Korean, but BB is made in Mexico and Canada and soon to be made in the US. And BB doesn’t do TAX evasion like Apple or Google does!

  10. Douken

    05/24/2013 at 6:56 am

    Mr Hastings is basing his comments on the older legacy BlackBerry’s. He said he W’s , fan from 1998 to circa 2007. He hasn’t tried the new device yet he goes to far to say “We don’t currently support streaming on the BlackBerry, it’s a unique operating system you have to target, and unfortunately there’s just not enough volume for entertainment,” which it might be true for the old platform but not for BlackBerry 10. Which in a sense makes an ignorant comment.

    It’s like saying Have you tried the new Lamborghini Aventador?

    “No, Lamborghini makes good tractors for farmers, I used to be a fan and had a Lamborghini 22PS, but then I wanted something that gave me more thrills so I got a Ferrari 360 Modena.”

    The only reason he thinks like that and the only reason he doesn’t have a BlackBerry 10 device is because he hasn’t tried it.

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