Netflix Comes To RCN (by way of TiVo)


Well that was quick. Netflix had informed investors that their streaming video service would be available via US cable operators “this quarter” … and, just a few days later, here we are with RCN, Grande, and Atlantic identified as the first partners to serve up Netflix via customer-leased TiVo hardware. At this stage of the game, as we’d presumed, Netflix subscriptions are managed independently by customers without the cableco’s involvement. However, folks can subscribe to Netflix directly from the TiVo set-top and we wonder if the providers get a little kickback. Related, while Netflix has clearly resolved the content licensing issues that previously prevented this sort of deployment and beyond an Open Connect implementation, we’d sure love to know more about the nature of these relationships – if and how money changes hands. Sources tell us Netflix will appear on RCN TiVo hardware Monday, April 28th.

9 thoughts on “Netflix Comes To RCN (by way of TiVo)”

  1. Of course, this is the low hanging fruit… smaller cablecos looking for an edge, without the weight to work many broad, favorable content deals, using a previously constructed app. Will be interesting to see what other cable hardware this may come to and if any of the big providers get onboard with Netflix.

  2. So if I buy Netflix on a RCN subscription, can I use it on the 1000 other devices I have, or is it somehow a RCNetflix account, and I can only see it on “channel 450?” I don’t see why it would be limited, but it might. Also, can I add on the Disc rental piece, and is that added to my cable bill… or a separate bill…?

  3. For now, it’s separate Netflix billing. The account/subscription is good on any device Netflix runs on. The channel tuning thing is just a shortcut, similar but different to the shortcut icon/link on the screen I posted above.

  4. Netflix is Live on RCN! Netflix icon appeared this morning below the RCN VOD logo. And the latest version of Netfllix (4/15/2014) is very impressive speedwise even on the Premiere. Scrolling left and right has been optimized (holding down left or right arrow) as does double arrow left and right. Score one for Netflix, TiVo and RCN.

    Also, RCN customers can get a 30 day free trial if they are not already Netflix users.

  5. I’m wondering if this is next to useless because:
    – if you wanted Netflix before then you probably already had it via Apple TV or Roku or some other method
    – TiVo apps are horribly slow (unless that’s changed in the last 9 months since I got rid of my TiVo – I’m guessing it hasn’t). So slow that they’re close to useless.

  6. Netflix app on Premiere was updated like 6 months ago. Still slow to launch, but better and decent when running. Also, launching content via app and DIAL support improves the experience. Having said that, I don’t even watch Netflix on my even faster TiVo Mini and flip to another source.

  7. Hey Dave,

    Did you see the coverage suggesting that on RCN et al Netflix will actually show up as a “Channel”? Not sure what they mean. Whether there will actually be a pre-programmed channel with time slots for “House of Cards” and “Orange is the New Black” at 8pm and 9pm each night or whatever, or if its just a channel that shows “Netflix” all the way across the screen and when you click on it takes you to the existing app. Any idea?

  8. It’s just a shortcut – you dial the numbers up to land in the app. People coming from the television side of the house think in that manner – I’ve seen this with other services and even the OTA Channel Master DVR+ has Vudu on 200.

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