Netflix CEO Reed Hastings just predicted when cable TV will die once and for all

Netflix has taken the world by storm, transforming itself from a mail-order DVD company to a streaming behemoth that uses 37% of the bandwidth in North America.

And it represents the massive change many think will take place in the entertainment industry, with traditional cable TV companies buckling in favour of streaming services.

In the first half of 2015, year-over-year subscriber growth for cable companies like Time Warner Cable and Comcast actually went negative. And in a short time, more people will stream video online each day than will watch scheduled programs on traditional TV,
according to a new study from Ericsson.

The writing is on the wall, and it seems traditional cable companies will soon be forced to evolve or die. And according to Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, that day isn’t too far off. During an interview with CNBC, Hastings said he believes that within the next 10 to 20 years, all of television will be on the internet. Not just some of it, all of it.

And he went even further than that. “All the current linear networks will go to on-demand,” he told CNBC — even sports networks like ESPN, whose weak growth set off a stock plunge among media stocks in August. If Hastings is correct, the media landscape will look drastically different a decade from now.

Hastings also spoke about why Netflix has enjoyed such meteoric growth. He credited two things: the internet and data analysis. “We are just a learning machine. Every time we put out a new show, we are analysing it, figuring out what worked and what didn’t so we get better next time,” he said.

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