During a keynote by Co-founder and Chief Executive Reed Hastings at CES 2016 yesterday, Netflix announced that it has launched its streaming service globally, in more than 130 new countries around the world.
The service will not yet be available in China, though the company continues to explore options for providing the service. It also won’t be available in Crimea, North Korea and Syria due to U.S. government restrictions on American companies.
“Today you are witnessing the birth of a new global Internet TV network,” said Hastings. “With this launch, consumers around the world — from Singapore to St. Petersburg, from San Francisco to Sao Paulo — will be able to enjoy TV shows and movies simultaneously — no more waiting. With the help of the Internet, we are putting power in consumers’ hands to watch whenever, wherever and on whatever device.”
For one monthly price, members around the world can enjoy Netflix original series, as well as a catalog of licensed TV shows and movies. In 2016, the company says that it plans to release 31 new and returning original series, two dozen original feature films and documentaries, a wide range of stand-up comedy specials, and 30 original kids series – available at the same time to members everywhere.
While largely available in English in most new countries, Netflix today added Arabic, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese to the 17 languages it already supports.
“From today onwards, we will listen and we will learn, gradually adding more languages, more content and more ways for people to engage with Netflix,” said Hastings. “We’re looking forward to bringing great stories from all over the world to people all over the world.”
As you can see in the image above, it’s apparently available throughout continental Africa – on virtually any device that has an Internet connection.
What I’d really like to know here is, how many of our readers outside of the USA are Netflix subscribers. As the service enters territories in which there are (or aren’t) similar existing popular local streaming platforms, how many of you are signing up for Netflix? How many are maybe even canceling your subscriptions to the local services you already subscribe to, in order to sign up for Netflix streaming accounts?
I’m simply curious, as I wonder whether Netflix truly is a dominant global platform, or if it’s dominant in certain areas (like the USA for example), but lags behind other providers in others.
I also wonder whether Netflix plans to finance content that’s specific to each country that it’s available, using local talent.
For a full list of countries and territories where Netflix is now available, see here.