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Netflix, Inc. (NFLX) Friends Turn Foes as Epix Features Creep

Netflix Inc shares spike on Japan launch

Netflix, Inc. ’s decision to never offer offline movie viewing could prove costly for the firm as more and more rivals are opting for this feature. The Premium cable network Epix said it will make the feature of watching movies on mobile devices, without the need of connecting to the internet, available for its users by the end of this month, the firm said in a press release.

Netflix Inc shares spike on Japan launch

Epix now a Netflix rival

The move from Epix, which is a joint venture of Paramount Pictures, Lionsgate and MGM, comes alongside the end of the firms licensing pact with Netflix. Epix and Netflix, Inc. pact will expire by September end, and from October 1 Epix’s deal with Hulu will commence. Earlier this year, the firm also renewed its pact with Amazon Prime.

Epix will be the first traditional TV network to offer offline-viewing. The new feature will be available on the Epix mobile app for Amazon Kindle Fire tablets, and also on the phones and tablets running on the iOS and Android. Epix offers 3000 on demand titles including James Bond and Star Trek franchises, original documentaries and music and comedy events.

Epix president and CEO, Mark Greenberg, said “By creating a network-first, true TV Everywhere experience, consumers can now download a movie from our library and watch it anywhere, anytime, even without a Wi-Fi connection.” Suggesting the uses of the feature, Greenberg said users can now enjoy their favorite shows and movies while camping, on a train or waiting at an airport.

Netflix still not in favor of offline-viewing

Earlier this month, Amazon also expanded its offline-viewing capability for the Prime members. The feature allows users to download films and TV shows, and watch them at their convenience without the need of internet. Netflix has not been in favor of this feature at all, arguing the problems associated with Wi-Fi will eventually be resolved. “With Internet speeds climbing and WiFi available in more and more places, the ability to stream live wherever you are will make downloading less relevant over time,” Netflix told BI.

Netflix, Inc. is paying no heed to the rival’s offerings, and instead is continuing with its global expansion. The firm recently announced plans to expand in South Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Taiwan.

On Tuesday, Netflix shares closed up 3.63% at $99.16. Year to date, the stock is up over 102% while, in the last one-year they are up almost 46%.

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Aman is MBA (Finance) with an experience on both marketing and Finance side. He has work as a Risk Analyst for AIR Worldwide, and is currently leading VeRa FinServ, a Financial Research firm. Favorite pastimes include watching science fiction movies, playing PC games and cricket.