Netflix has found a surprising ally as it tries to boost its subscriber base: cable operators. Firms that stand to be disrupted by Netflix’s distribution model are now working out deals to make the streaming service directly available through their own boxes.
Earlier this month Netflix inked a deal with U.K.-based Virgin Media to bring the streaming service to the cable operator’s 1.7 million subscribers who have TiVo set-top boxes. A similar deal was announced last week in Sweden with Com Hem, which is the country’s largest cable provider with almost 1.8 million subscribers.
While both deals still require viewers to purchase a Netflix subscription, they open the door for an increased cooperation between traditional cable operators and Internet-based streaming services. Users will now be able to seamlessly switch between watching cable and viewing content on demand via Netflix within the set-top-box interface. Currently, users typically have to switch between a cable box and other Netflix-enabled devices, like Roku gadgets or video-game consoles.
Read more at TIME: http://business.time.com/2013/10/01/netflix-is-coming-after-your-cable-box/