We get Netflix US to answer 5 questions we’ve all been wondering about

  • As told to Sarit Ray, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: Jan 15, 2016 15:56 IST
Netflix launched in India on January 6, 2016.

Q) Why was House of Cards, a signature show, left out of the India catalogue?

For House of Cards, we didn’t negotiate global licenses to the content, so they’ve aired on other platforms in the meantime. We still have territorial licensing; that’s a legacy from the last seven or eight years. We’re moving as quickly as we can to have global availability of all the content on Netflix so that there are no regional distinctions. We’re still somewhat a prisoner of the current distribution architecture; we’re trying really hard to get there.

Q) The Indian content on Netflix seems limited at the moment. Is that likely to expand? Will we see a Netflix original show made in India?

There is a limited amount of local content available at launch... We will add more as the service grows in popularity and we better understand what our members want to watch in each region… In most markets, the size of the catalogue doubles in the first year.

We’re already making series and films in Brazil, Canada, Colombia, France, Japan, Italy, Mexico and the UK, and are always on the lookout for new and compelling projects that would appeal to a global audience.

Q) Hollywood films typically release late in India. Will Netflix be a game-changer here by making them available quicker?

The goal is to offer a fully global service with a global catalogue so no one has to wait for the hottest new show or movie. However, the world of content licensing has traditionally been very fragmented and regionalised. It will take some time, several years at least, to get to an offering that’s the same everywhere.

Q) How does Netflix typically affect online piracy in a country?

We find people are willing to pay a fair price for great content, delivered without hassle whenever they want it, as opposed to resorting to illegal methods. Our push to secure global rights and release all originals simultaneously to our global members will help address piracy by those who simply want access to the latest movies and TV shows. There’s been a notable reduction in piracy in countries where we operate such as the US and Canada, where we have been the longest, according to Sandvine Internet Phenomena (sandvine.com) reports on Bittorrent.

Q) With limited speeds and data caps a concern in India, there have been talks a tie-up up with an Internet Provider as a partner. Is that likelihood?

We would be unable to comment on private discussions with local partners.

— Queries answered by Netflix USA

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