How Netflix won the streaming wars
The big picture: Netflix's combination of original content and reruns has been the backbone of its success so far, and now it's positioning itself aggressively for a new phase that relies more heavily on live broadcasts.
- Every streamer has some destination viewing: Max had "Succession"; Disney+ has Marvel and Star Wars; Netflix has "The Crown."
But unlike many of its competitors, Netflix also has continued to spend big on a library of licensed content — giving subscribers a reason not to cancel even when there's no new season of their favorite original show.
- Netflix subscribers watched 800 million hours last year of the original show "The Night Agent." They also watched 600 million hours of "Suits," a USA Network drama that premiered during the Obama administration.
- "Netflix has the reputation of being a service for browsers — the place to go when you don't necessarily know what you want to watch," The Ringer wrote recently.
What's next: Live sports — mainly football — is still the biggest thing that happens on any screen, and some of Netflix's competitors, mainly Amazon, have made more aggressive moves to claim a piece of that action.
- But Netflix got closer this week with its blockbuster deal to stream WWE's "Raw" — a way to cement livestreaming as a core feature of the platform with a property that's at least adjacent to real sports.