There’s been a lot of buzz about the Netflix app for PlayBook from users and media alike. As soon as Netflix tweeted they won’t be supporting PlayBook, the media jumped on it thinking that the reason was because the PlayBook was somehow inferior. We’ve talked to people at RIM and sources close to the situation, and we can certainly say that the reason to not go with the PlayBook has absolutely nothing to do with the tablet’s hardware or software. Sure, volume sales might have something to do with it, but not really when you consider Netflix has a Vita and 3DS app. It more likely has to do with politics and behind-the-scenes discussions. Some thoughts below from us and a link to our buddy Doug at Untether.
So it seems to break down as follows:
1. Netflix has reevaluated its “every screen” stance following its recent financial troubles.
2. Majority of its mobile users are already subscribers.
3. Costs therefore difficult for Netflix to justify additional development on low volume platforms like the BlackBerry PlayBook.
4. Will not add any new customers to their base
So overall, the idea here is costs won’t justify development time since development won’t result in any significant subscriber increase. But there’s two things worth addressing:
1. What if not supporting the PlayBook will result in a significant decrease in subscribers (ie build to save the subscriber base)?
— Mike Kirkup (@mikekirkup) March 9, 2012
2. What are the real costs of porting an app like Netflix when we’ve heard game developers say porting their title only took “one fuck!ng day”?
— BlackBerryCool (@BlackBerryCool) March 7, 2012