After a bizarre quarter involving a confusing price change and an almost-spin-off of its DVD business, Netflix announced its quarterly earnings this week, and there wasn't a lot of good news. The company lost a total of 810,000 subscribers in three months, down to 23.8 million; CEO Reed Hastings said many were long-term members canceling as a result of the price hikes. The company expects revenue and profits to be lower than anticipated in the next quarter as well.
Hastings also reiterated that streaming is the future for Netflix, and said he expects DVD subscribers to continue to decline. Though streaming subscriber numbers didn't grow as fast as the company thought, largely due to combined subscribers canceling streaming to save money, it continues to be the growing part of Netflix: streaming hours are triple now what they were a year ago and set new records most weeks, Hastings said. Netflix also continues to spend more to get access to premium, timely content from companies like Dreamworks and Paramount: Hastings noted that "The Rum Diaries" and "The Immortals" will be available exclusively to Netflix subscribers in the pay-per-view window, and that Netflix is working on other similar deals.