Verizon broadens Netflix FiOS access after successful NYC trial
| 25 November 2014
Verizon Communications, one-time adversary of Netflix, is now embracing the streaming giant with a triple-play offering that comes with a free year of access to the over-the-top (OTT) service.
Following a trial in New York City, Verizon, which enjoys a direct, paid interconnect deal with Netflix, is now giving all new FiOS voice, data and TV subscribers a $150 Visa gift card and a free year of Netflix.
In a significant departure from the competitive position that linear TV providers have thus far taken when it comes to Netflix and other OTT operators, a Verizon TV ad in New York shows a couple pulling up the Netflix original series Orange is the New Black as part of their home entertainment activities—all supported by Verizon broadband.
"It has become quite clear that every content creator/programmer is now willing to sell their best product to Netflix (whether it be new or syndicated series)," said media analyst Richard Greenfield at BTIG.
He added: "Content owners are trying to offset or at least mitigate the impact from what appears to be a fundamental change in how consumers watch television (meaning not live), a softening in the TV advertising market as TV ads are no longer 'special,' and the slow subscriber decline/shrinking bundles of multichannel television. Now we are seeing distributors increasingly focused on marketing Netflix."