Speaking at a technology conference on Thursday, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings delivered some disappointing news to the company’s biggest fans. The company, which started out delivering DVDs in the mail and helped usher in the era of on-demand video streaming, won’t be offering live sports or a set-top box of its own anytime soon. When it comes to releasing a streaming device, there’s just no reason for Netflix to devote the time and resources necessary to create its first piece of hardware.
If you’re a Netflix superfan, Chief Executive Reed Hastings may have just burst a couple of your bubbles: dreams of a Netflix-made streaming-media box and live sports. In a Q&A session at the Recode technology conference in Palos Verdes, Calif., Hastings said Thursday his subscription-streaming-video company has no interest in making a device, and it doesn’t have the time, energy or money to buy the rights to live sports content. Competitor Amazon launched a media-streaming device, Kindle Fire TV, earlier this year. The e-commerce giant competes with Netflix with its Prime Instant Video streaming service, which is part of its $99-a-year Prime membership program best known for free two-day shipping on qualifying Amazon purchases. However, Amazon has long been part of the consumer-electronics game, with its ubiquitous Kindle e-readers and Kindle Fire tablets.