Netflix iPhone App – Not Coming Anytime Soon

AT&T

If you're crazy about movies and were expecting Netflix to come up with its own movie-streaming iPhone app, you may have to wait. 

In a recent interview with Reuters, Reed Hastings, the CEO at NetFlix has made it clear that while an iPhone app is definitely on the cards, it might not be coming anytime soon. 

Netflix has apparently been taking challenges one at a time, and at present their focus is purely on the gaming consoles and Internet TV. Netflix has an ongoing exclusive deal with XBox Live in the gaming console market. This apart, Netflix has also been pushing hard on the Internet TV market where there is some stiff competition. Hulu, Apple, Amazon and Blockbuster. Youtube has also recently announced their movie streaming service and Netflix is clearly focused on the movie streaming service on the internet. 

So, why isn't Netflix looking at movie streaming on iPhones in the same light? Hastings says, "it’s something that’s likely to come over time. But nothing in the short term. (With) movie watching, we are not focused on mobile yet, but (instead) on the TV, on Blu-ray and on the video game consoles. We will get to mobile eventually, including the iPhone."

Hastings' priorities are right to an extent. Currently, iPhones are not a favorable platform for services consuming a lot of internet bandwidth. With limitations placed by AT&T on the usage of its 3G services by iPhone apps like Skype, SlingMobile Player etc, it is very unlikely that they will agree to let Netflix stream its movies over the internet to the iPhones. In that case, a Wi-Fi only movie streaming service does not make much business sense too. This sentiment was also echoed by John Silverman, the Skype CEO who, as we reported yesterday, is lobbying to get carriers to allow Skype's mobile application to work over their 3G network. 

But there have been a few examples of streaming services like TV.com, UStream TV and video broadcasting iPhone apps like Qik that are allowed to work over 3G. So, Netflix could bring their service to the iPhone (over 3G). I'm sure there are many users out there waiting for just this to happen. 

[via Reuters]

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