Netflix, who recently announced they'd be forming a separate brand called "Qwikster" for customers who wanted to receive DVD's instead of streaming video, has retracted its strategy and announced that Qwikster is dead-before-arrival.
From the Netflix blog this morning:
"It is clear that for many of our members two websites would make things more difficult, so we are going to keep Netflix as one place to go for streaming and DVDs. This means no change: one website, one account, one password… in other words, no Qwikster."
We all make mistakes, and Netflix seems to making its fair share of them as it sorts through which corporate strategy will get them ahead of the curve, and atop the heap of entertainment delivery systems.
It was only a few weeks ago that Netflix announced a plan that would’ve seen Netflix essentially splitting in two, with Netflix.com devoted to streaming videos while DVD rentals would head to a new site, called Qwikster. Public outcry was immediate. Netflix was criticized by its base for disrespecting them ("we're not good enough for the Netflix brand--they think we're old fashioned and out-of-date for viewing DVD's), and slammed by brand critics for a ridiculous name..."Qwikster" not Quickster"--sounds like "Friendster"--the failed social networking site.
And this latest move has already been called "another head-spinning development for Netflix, which has managed to enrage millions of customers in the past few months thanks to site redesigns, price hikes, and then its bombshell plan last month for Qwikster."
So, while this is an embarrassing fumble for Netflix, we respect their willingness to qwickly quickly change course on a massively public corporate mistake. Consumers desperately need a new entertainment model, and we wish Netflix much luck in finding its way.