Netflix: one step closer to a global TV network

Martin Brinkmann
Jan 7, 2016
Music and Video

Netflix announced yesterday that it launches it services globally yesterday offering it to more than 190 countries adding 130 new countries in the process. While that is still not all countries of the world, China is for instance not among the list, the move increases the company's availability significantly.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings calls it the launch of a "new global Internet TV network" and that's certainly true up to a point considering that Netflix original series will be made available simultaneously on launch worldwide.

The situation is different where licensed shows and content is concerned though. Shows may not be available at all in certain regions where Netflix is available, or may be delayed instead.

If you check this comparison listing of movies and shows available on Netflix UK and US for example, you will notice that there are big differences between the two offerings.

Netflix subscribers from the US have access to 6991 shows and movies (not counting multiple episodes of the same show) while UK subscribers to only 3621 movies and shows.

And things are equally unequal when you compare the availability in other countries Netflix is available in.

This is likely not Netflix's fault at all, but due to how content from traditional TV and movie companies is licensed.

Actually, one of the main reasons for companies like Amazon or Netflix to increase the production of original series and movies is that they have full control over those shows and can make them available to subscribers from all over the world at the same time without having to worry about licensing limitations.

Netflix plans to release 31 "new and returning original series, and two dozen original feature films and documentaries" in 2016. Among them highly rated shows such as Marvel's Daredevil, Narcos or Marco Polo. Beyond 2106, there is a high probability that the company will increase its efforts even further not only to distinguish itself from competing services, but also to reduce the reliance on traditional TV and movie deals.

Netflix subscribers can use VPN services or DNS services to access Netflix content in other regions the service is available in. Customers from the UK can increase the number of shows and movies available by a factor of 2 almost, but even US customers benefit from these type of services as some shows and movies are not available to them either.

It is interesting to note that Netflix accounts work in all countries, and that is the main reason why VPN and DNS services are such a popular option for subscribers as they can access content from the US, UK, Japan or Germany using a single account.

Now You: Are you subscribed to an online streaming service? If so, which?

Netflix: one step closer to a global TV network
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Netflix: one step closer to a global TV network
Netflix announced yesterday that it is now available in more than 190 countries, increasing its availability by more than 130 in the process.
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  1. Don Gateley said on January 9, 2016 at 9:47 pm

    LOL! I just wish they would make it run in Firefox or diagnose why it doesn’t with suggestions on what to do about it.

  2. Anonymous said on January 9, 2016 at 9:45 pm

    LOL! I just wish they would make it run in Firefox or diagnose why it doesn’t with suggestions on what to do about it.

  3. Ken Saunders said on January 9, 2016 at 5:26 am

    I’ve been with Netflix for a while. I still like it. Not so much for the movies since they don’t have a great selection, but the TV shows and series are good.
    HULU finally offers a commercial free plan so I’m ready to try it.
    I had always said that I would be willing to try it and pay more than the base plan if they offered a plan without ads.
    The pay more plan is $4 more. That’s worth it to me.
    With Ads:
    $7.99 mo

  4. S2015 said on January 8, 2016 at 3:59 am

    It’s good to read that announce at (without using VPN), it’d be a big improvement made by Netflix, it’s set a good example for other popular alternatives as well.

    One the other side (* it’s a BLUE one), some user would still run into such an error when trying to open its HOME, informing “Sorry, Netflix is not available in your country yet. Enter your email & we’ll let you know when Netflix is available.”.

    That being said, one could still access its content without a valid VPN service provider.

  5. Petar said on January 8, 2016 at 1:08 am

    Netflix original series are not available on all markets they entered yesterday.
    For example, if there is local distributor for House of Cards (almost always more expensive one) then this series will not be available over local Netflix. So, we have situation where Netflix series are not available on Netflix.

  6. Patrick said on January 7, 2016 at 10:05 pm

    JMW: Thanks for your input, it may help someone. I have a LG Smart TV that receives wii streaming. Your solution would not work and yes I too hope that sub-titles would be more available.

  7. JohnMWhite said on January 7, 2016 at 6:46 pm

    I haven’t tried this myself but I had a feeling that there would be a way to load subs in parallel with Netflix. Whether it would be easy to find Spanish subtitles to add in, I cannot say, but in practice it seems doable, based on this:

    Of course, I would hope that more languages are available officially very soon, especially major languages such as Spanish, French and German.

  8. Patrick said on January 7, 2016 at 4:52 pm

    I am subscribed to Netflix and MLB.COM. While this announcement seem to be GREAT, it really is NOT. The fly in the ointment is the language barriers. I live in Central America, my wife is a Latina. What good does a gizillon shows do if sub-titling in Spanish is not offered? This effects all the Central American and South American countries except Brazil. That is a large audience. Now imagine all the countries of the world, each having there own language, will sub-titles of each of these countries be presented? Until sub-titles of all Netflix’s movies/shows are available in the language of the home countries I don’t see this as a big deal.

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on January 7, 2016 at 5:37 pm

      Right, the language barrier is without doubt an issue but I still think most can benefit from the program in different regions if they speak their home language and English at the very least. If you only speak one language, then you may not benefit that much from it though until subtitles are offered by default for all shows.

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