For the last 25 years the main way people got their movie fix was by going to the video store and renting a video (now a DVD, or even HD or Blue Ray Disc). There are video stores on everywhere it seems. If you wanted to watch a movie, you jumped it the car and went down to the corner video shop and got a movie.
The video store was born through the development of a new technology, the video recorder. This new device opened new business doors. Some shrewd business people understood that people would love to pop a tape into their VCR and watch a movie tight at home. Obviously they were right and the video store business took off.
This has been the main mode of home movie watching, along with cable TV, for a long time. Now as people all have personal computers, and high speed internet connections, we see a new solution emerge in the movie industry. A company called Netflix saw the potential of a combination of new technologies in 1997. The company leaders saw that the new DVD technology, combined with strong internet activity created new possibilities.
Their vision was to take the video store and put it online. Instead of driving to the video store to get you movies you go online, order what you want, and the movie is mailed to you. This concept takes good advantage to the new technologies that are coming into play. Netflix had the vision to see that the internet was only going to grow in use and application, and that more and more people would get comfortable with the technologies.
It has taken a few years but now Netflix has a huge presence in the DVD rental world. When they adopted a monthly subscription strategy things really got going. Now Netflix rivals Blockbuster, and has had such a strong impact on the industry that now Blockbuster offers an online service similar to Netflix.
Like Blockbuster did before Netflix had the vision of how to use the next wave of technology in the movie rental industry. Their early recognition of what would work made Netflix a winner.
Some of the things that evolve from the early Netflix concept that changed the industry are: They started having renters put on a subscription basis instead of renting movie to movie. They also abolished the late fees; you keep any movie you rent as long as you want. You won’t be able to get another movie until you return it, but no late fees! Late fees had become a big bone of contention from regular video store renters. This different approach has forced Blockbuster, and other video rental stores to remove late fess.
The latest evolution that Netflix has taken in is streaming video. Netflix now offers over 12,000 movies that you can watch for free (if you have a subscription) on your computer. As an added bonus, if you have an Xbox 360 live membership, you can watch the streaming movies on your TV through the Xbox. Innovation moving forward.