“Our DVD Players Are Following Our VCRs To The Junkyard”

As DVDs become an increasingly marginal product in this age of streaming, will Netflix too be shunted aside by the lower entry costs of businesses that deal purely in digital data? From Nicholas Thompson’s post, “Is Netflix Doomed?” on the New Yorker’s Culture blog:

“It’s a bad time, too, for Netflix to have declining subscriber loyalty. The company believes that the mail-order-DVD business is finished, and that our DVD players are following our VCRs to the junkyard. So it is killing off that part of its business. Unfortunately, though, that’s the part with the high barriers to entry. It’s not easy for a startup to build massive warehouses and systems for mailing discs. It is easy, however, to get into the streaming business. Yesterday, for example, we learned of a startup called NimbleTV, which plans to let you watch all the channels you subscribe to through your cable provider on your phone or your tablet. If you had that, would you want Netflix, too?”


“The incredible new world of DVD,” 1997: