An Inconvenient Truth: The Rise of Netflix Alternatives

David DumasNews

Netflix alternatives and what they mean

For years, Netflix had it good. Now, according to Forbes’ Stephen McBride, the honeymoon is over. Netflix alternatives are now plentiful, but that isn’t the only reason the streaming giant should be concerned.

As McBride lays out in his exceptional Forbes article, the glory days of Netflix are quickly coming to an end. If they’re not already over. Netflix alternatives are cropping up left and right. This could spell problems for the service. However, it should only help customers, subscribers, and streaming video technology.

But the rise of Hulu and other competitors isn’t the only reason for concern.

Glory Days

The early days of streaming came in like a lion. Netflix, the one-time mail-order video service, came on strong and quickly gained popularity. If you can find a Blockbuster video executive somewhere, ask them all about it. Between shots of Pepto Bismol, they may actually tell you.

The streaming service may have come from humble beginnings and mail-order offerings. However, it wasn’t long before they realized that streaming was where it was at. And they were right.

Onward to the golden years which saw Netflix increase its subscriber base, license popular movies and television shows, and generally enjoy sole position at the top of streaming mountain.

But that’s about to change. As McBride points out in the article, the competition is finally waking up.

On The Way Out

Netflix alternatives such as Hulu and Amazon Prime are plentiful. To date, there are dozens such services ranging from highly adopted platforms such as Hulu; to more genre specific sevices like Shudder which focus on horror and sci-fi content.

The end result, however, is the same. People have options. However, the variety of competing services isn’t the only issue for Netflix. It’s the licensing.

When Netflix was the only game in town, production companies like Disney happily licensed their content to the streaming Giant. Now, Disney is getting its own streaming service, Disney+.

Which means Disney’s impressive (and lucrative) catalog of films will be gone from Netflix before too long. Others have followed suit. HBO has HBO Go, for example. NBC is launching its own streaming service so The Office isn’t long for Netflix either.

In fact, according to analysts, more than half of Netflix’ most popular shows are owned by companies planning on launching their own streaming service.

And while Netflix hasn’t skimped on original programming, the message is still clear. The glory days are over and Netflix alternatives are here to stay.

What Happens Next?

This isn’t to sound the death knell of Netflix. Far from it. The company has spent billions developing and shoring up its own content library. However, the times are changing.

As competition rises to the occasion, the only true victor is likely to be streaming technology itself. And with that comes the need for more sophisticated methodology.

Imagine a streaming service which accurately predicts movies or shows you might enjoy. Well, this is already happening to an extent. Imagine still, a cross-over which enables these services to recommend these shows to you on other platforms such as Facebook or Instagram. Well, this is also happening as well.

Machine learning and AI can be a crucial part of shoring up this technology and developing it into a more sophisticated, more helpful, and more effective marketing and customer acquisition tool for these companies.

Streaming entertainment isn’t likely to dry up anytime soon. In fact, it may well be the future. As Netflix alternatives continue sprouting up, it’s easy to see this technology taking off in a big way.

Indeed, it already has. However, if you can recall the rise of Netflix, you should not be surprised by the meteoric rise of what’s coming next.