Although such a deal is said not to be “imminent,” Netflix is reported to be in talks with a number of US pay-TV providers, including Comcast and Suddenlink Communications, to make its online video service available as an app on people’s set-top boxes.
If it goes through, such a deal would represent a first for Netflix in the US, though it had already announced a similar agreement with Virgin in the UK.
One potential obstruction in the discussions between Netflix and its various traditional rivals is apparently that the former are insistent that the latter integrate Netflix’s special streaming technology. However, while Netflix insist that these special servers are necessary in terms of providing customers with the best possible quality service, internet providers like Comcast and Verizon are worried about opening the door to other online services seeking special conditions.
Only earlier this year, Comcast, the largest U.S. pay-TV provider, said it had no plans to add apps from OTT services to its latest Internet-connected set-top box. Since then, however, Comcast has purportedly become more open to the possibility.