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Summary:

Netflix is spinning off its DVD business and will call it Qwikster. The new DVD-by-mail company will start renting video games in addition to DVDs, in the process, competing with the likes of Gamestop, Amazon and others.

Is Xbox 360 doomed?

Apparently Netflix is changing its name and some of its game. Literally. Lost in the hullabaloo of Netflix spinning off its DVD business is the news that the DVD-by-mail company is going to start renting video games as well, in the process competing with the likes of Gamestop, Amazon and others. This was part of the email Reed Hastings, CEO of Netflix sent to the customers this morning:

Qwikster will be the same website and DVD service that everyone is used to. It is just a new name, and DVD members will go to qwikster.com to access their DVD queues and choose movies. One improvement we will make at launch is to add a video games upgrade option, similar to our upgrade option for Blu-ray, for those who want to rent Wii, PS3 and Xbox 360 games. Members have been asking for video games for many years, but now that DVD by mail has its own team, we are finally getting it done. Other improvements will follow.

If anything, this could be an incremental boost for the snail mail business. Unlike movies, books and music, the shift to digital delivery of the classic video games has seen a much slower ramp up, though I do believe that over next few years that will change, particularly as we experience an increase average bandwidth into homes to over 50 megabits per second.

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  1. Let me get this straight. His mistake was not communicating enough?!

    It wasn’t screwing his customers with a large price increase that added no value?

    And now, he is fixing it by having his customers who are paying the extra price have to deal with two different services.

    Wow. What an improvement.

  2. A “Videogames Upgrade Option”? WTF? I’m a long-time Netflix subscriber, was very upset that they changed my beloved “DVD’s & Streaming” price, but this has now put me over the top. Just went to Blockbuster’s online site, and they’re ALREADY bundling DVD’s-by-mail AND videogames, at NO extra fee. Goodbye Netflix. You were awesome for many years, but will not get my money or loyalty anymore.

  3. Even with the price increase, it was still less than one third of what I was paying for cable. Splitting off into two companies and I have to manage my lists separately is what pisses me off most. I’m more likely to cancel now that I was before. I’m just waiting to get a few more movies in and finish watching a couple series first. Some of the harder to get anime.

  4. The name sounds more like a scamster company. It’s name you expect to see on Nigerian spams. Why make a simple service more complicated? Why mess with loyal customers? How “high” is he?

  5. With this splitting into 2 different services I would have to keep track of separately, I cancelled my Netflix/Qwikster/Whatever subscription today.

  6. Hey you still get unlimited DVDs and streaming with only a sliver more to pay. They have to make money on this venture to be able to continue offering videos at such a low price. I’ll take the price increase and just deal with it. If this video game upgrade is low enough I might drop my Gamefly subscription because that single service is more expensive than the 2-in-1 Netflix/Qwikster service currently.

  7. I am just hearing about Netflix getting ready to offer games. Personally, I am glad that they are. I was just about to send an e-mail telling them to do so. Even if I have to pay a couple extra bucks a month, it’s worth it.

  8. Qwikster has been canned, but Netflix is actively taking customer feedback as to whether or not enough subscribers are interested in games to see if they should do that service anyway. Call them and tell them you still want games! 1 866 716 0414

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