is rumored to be eyeing up a move into video gaming for a while now. However, the streaming platform and production company has finally confirmed its intentions in its latest shareholders’ letter. “The time is right to learn more about how our members value games,” it said.
The 12-page-long piece of correspondence
touches on Netflix’s plans to enter the world of gaming under a closer look at its wider content goals. Further delving into the competitive landscape, it also reveals how the company has aspirations to take on the likes of Epic Games
With that in mind, here’s a closer look at everything you need to know about Netflix’s video gaming project plans thus far.
Netflix’s Gaming Project Pricing
While Netflix’s desire to enter the video gaming market may not have come as too much of a surprise, its planned pricing model certainly has. That’s because access to the streaming giant’s gaming service will cost subscribers nothing.
All of its planned games will be included as part of customers’ existing subscriptions. “You won’t have to pay an additional fee to buy a Netflix game,” says the company in its recent letter to shareholders.
Accessing Netflix’s Gaming Project
Precisely how users will access Netflix’s video games remains unclear. All that’s apparent so far is that the company will focus on titles for mobile devices to start with. Gamers looking to enjoy whatever Netflix is planning on their televisions, laptops, and elsewhere, it seems, will have to wait.
As it stands, everything points toward the likelihood that the first raft of games will be accessible via an updated Netflix mobile app.
Netflix Hires Former Oculus Executive
If one thing’s for sure, it’s that Netflix is serious about its plans to take the video gaming world by storm. Bloomberg recently reported
that the company had hired former Oculus
executive Mike Verdu. Seemingly brought on board to head up Netflix’s new gaming division, they have since confirmed the hiring.
That said, neither Netflix nor Verdu have provided any further details. Still, an Oculus connection should give those familiar with the virtual reality headset brand an idea of where the project is perhaps likely to go in terms of general direction.
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Zynga and EA Links Provide Further Hints
Recent Netflix recruit Mike Verdu has also spent time working at both Zynga
and Electronic Arts
. Zynga’s existing work on wildly popular games for social media platforms, like Facebook, could provide added insight into what’s in store at the streaming platform and production company.
Meanwhile, Electronic Arts is a leading publisher of video games across console, PC, and mobile alike. EA’s broad reach may further hint at a similarly extensive strategy from Verdu and the rest of the Netflix team.
Development Set to Begin Within Months
In addition to hiring ex-Oculus executive Mike Verdu, Netflix is also currently on a mission to recruit its own team of video game developers, according to Boy Genius Report
A leading source of exclusive and breaking mobile news, the technology category experts point toward development on Netflix’s new gaming project beginning at some point in the next few months.
Could a Netflix Games Console Be On the Horizon?
Various publishers have proposed that, in light of recent news, a Netflix-branded games console could be in the works. The streaming giant could face obstacles bringing its latest product to Apple’s crucial App Store
The App Store prohibits third parties from acting as alternative stores for games. With Netflix planning to include its new gaming titles as a part of customers’ existing subscriptions, it’s unclear whether this would be an issue. Either way, it’s a potential obstacle that the company could overcome with its own console.
Regardless, 9to5Mac has been quick to pour cold water on the idea. They point out
that it seems unlikely that Netflix would build a device solely to offer video games.
The popular Apple-focused news website’s main reason for doubting the possibility lies in the fact that Netflix has historically relied exclusively on online services to serve its customers. Hardware would be new for them.
Increase In Revenue Should Help Fund Netflix’s Gaming Project
Whatever Netflix has in store with its new gaming project, financing the endeavor shouldn’t be too big of a problem. The company is forecast to attract 3.5 million new subscribers in the next three months. That’s up from 2.2 million in the same period a year ago.
Worldwide, that would take Netflix to over 250 million active subscriptions. Based on its latest revenue figures, that could see the company earn up to $30 billion this year. If nothing else, there should be plenty to keep the lights on in its new gaming division.
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