Plan on subscribing to more streaming video services in the near future

The market for streaming video services is growing, with several new entrants and existing services reporting impressive subscriber growth. This sounds like a win for consumers on the surface. However, one of the side effects is the need for each service to differentiate itself, and one of the best ways to do that is to have more/better/newer content than the competition.


Netflix (House of Cards, Orange is the New Black) and Amazon Prime (Transparent, Alpha House) are both known for their quality original content, but Hulu, Crackle, and even Yahoo Screen are also investing in original content.

Streaming services are also competing to land exclusive rights to second-run content. Hulu recently paid about $180 million for the exclusive rights to every Seinfeld episode. They also struck an exclusive deal to stream future series from AMC. Amazon Prime has semi-exclusive rights to most older HBO series and a few notable series from CBS and FX and has a page to highlight them. Netflix has several exclusive content deals of its own, most notably with Disney/Pixar/Marvel/Lucasfilm.

I the end, I think it's great that all of this new content is being created and older content is easily accessible on these services - even if these exclusive deals mean that we may have to subscribe to multiple services to get the content we want. I think many people will find better value choosing from a variety of $8-$20 streaming services than they are with the traditional cable bundle. The cable bundle isn't going anywhere soon for those that prefer that model. I would also prefer to have healthy competition among streaming services rather than a single monopoly provider that would have leverage over content producers and the incentive to invest less in innovation.