Netflix claims it “isn’t worried” about Apple and Disney’s new streaming services

Justin Herrick
Justin Herrick
Apr 17, 2019

Netflix has revealed a blockbuster set of financial results – and says it isn’t worried about the threat of Apple TV+ and Disney+.

The two big-name competitors will launch this fall, adding to an already crowded marketplace for consumers.

Yet Netflix, the industry leader by a huge margin, says it welcomes (in public, at least) its newest competitors, saying there’s enough demand for multiple services to succeed.

Netflix says it is a lot like the earlier battle between cable channels trying to attract viewers away from broadcast networks.

Today, on-demand content has attracted viewers away from linear content. Now you’re able to watch a variety of entertainment at any time and on any device.

Here’s what Netflix said in its Q1 2019 earnings report:

“We don’t anticipate these new entrants will materially affect our growth because the transition from linear to on-demand entertainment is so massive because of the differing nature of our content offerings.”

Consumers and content creators will benefit from additional services, Netflix states, and believes consumers can choose a service that has an appealing catalog and price, and content creators can produce for specific audiences rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach.

Netflix laid out some of its accomplishments with original programming, too. In its first four weeks on the service, Umbrella Academy was watched by 45 million households. FYRE: The Greatest Party That Never Happened, captured the attention of 20 million households in its first month. The service has invested in original programming in English and foreign languages.

The data reveals that Netflix accounts for 10% of “total TV usage” in the United States and 2% of “global downstream mobile internet traffic.” Both statistics appear significant at a glance, but Netflix expects plenty of room for growth in the years ahead.

As for the rest of its earnings report, Netflix expressed continued dominance.

The service added 1.74 million subscribers in the United States and 7.84 million subscribers internationally.

With those additions, Netflix has nearly 150 million subscribers around the world who are paying a monthly fee for access to its library. In turn, Netflix generated $4.52 billion in revenue during the quarter.

Meanwhile, Netflix raised its prices at the start of April. It won’t be clear if that impacts growth until future earnings reports are published, but the decision was necessary to cover what might be a $15 billion expenditure on original programming.

Apple TV+ doesn’t have a price at the moment, and Disney+ will enter the market at $6.99 per month.

We’ll see how Netflix handles Apple and Disney’s attempts at video streaming.

The competitors won’t be able to accelerate fast enough to match the subscriber base in the first few months or years, but both companies are committed to building vast catalogs of content early on.

So don’t assume that you’ll ignore Apple TV+ or Disney+ just because they’re new.