“Netflix monthly viewing exceeded 1 billion hours for the first time ever in June,” said Netflix CEO Reed Hastings on his Facebook page after congratulating his content licensing team. This comes after the reversal of Qwikster, weathering the storm from losing subscribers after raising rates and the spat between Netflix and Comcast for putting a data cap.
Hastings then began predicting Netflix’s climb to cable-like numbers after giving crediting Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos for the push and the imminent release of their first original series House of Cards and locked licenses of Arrested Development.
Excerpt from AP:
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Netflix subscribers watched more than 1 billion hours of online video last month as the advent of high-speed Internet connections and high-powered mobile devices change people’s viewing habits.
The milestone announced Tuesday by Netflix CEO Reed Hastings came a day after Citigroup analyst Mark Mahaney issued an upbeat report about the company’s future. Those factors helped lift Netflix’s stock by more than 6 percent in Tuesday’s abbreviated trading session.
The stock is still struggling to recover from last fall’s sharp increase in U.S. prices, which triggered a backlash among customers and investors alike. Netflix shares gained $4.19 Tuesday to close at $72.04, well off their peak of nearly $305 last July.
The rising usage of Netflix’s Internet video service may turn out to be a mixed blessing as the company phases out its DVD-by-mail rental service to focus on its goal of building a lucrative franchise in Internet-streamed video.
Netflix is trying to wean people off DVDs to save on mailing costs and reduce its investment on a format that it expects to become obsolete. Delivering Internet video is quicker and less expensive than discs, but the streaming selection isn’t as extensive as what’s available on DVDs. To compensate, Netflix has been spending tens of millions of dollars during the past two years to add more compelling titles.