It looks like Netflix wants to be the next HBO after all. Reuters is reporting that Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has been meeting with cable company executives to add the service to their offerings.
Netflix would be added as an on-demand option on cable set-top boxes. Some cable operators would add the Netflix subscription cost to their bills, so consumers would pay for everything at once rather than separately.
Cable companies used to hate the idea of Netflix, because it encouraged people to cut the cord and get rid of their cable or satellite TV subscriptions. A lot of them have changed their mind, however, as Netflix has boosted the ratings of some of their programming. Why? People are more willing to take a shot on something new on the service. If they like it, they’ll keep watching or buy a DVD.
This is a huge step for Netflix. They do great on game consoles like the Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii and PlayStation 3, but more people have cable boxes than game consoles. This is just one more reason for someone to pay $8 a month for Netflix Instant.
There is a chance Netflix one day turns into a complete channel, much like HBO, but that seems unlikely. It would rob Netflix of its biggest asset: choice. Consumers can choose what they’re watching whenever they want, kind of like HBO Go. By the way, HBO should totally offer HBO Go to non-HBO subscribers. [Reuters]