Video streaming has become a popular method for binge watchers to receive their shows and various movies. However, this approach is quickly becoming unfeasible due to the rising costs and the decreasing stream quality. Netflix in particular has been hit hard with a variety of bad connections and inconsistent delivery while continuing to raise the prices for its services. With the subject of net neutrality hanging in the air, Netflix and other streaming users may find it more beneficial to use Blu-ray movies instead, which will provide a significantly better experience and unlimited replay value. To fully understand the benefits of the Blu-ray option, it's essential that the Netflix issues are explored first to show what effect various changes will have on its users.
Netflix has always had issues streaming over ISP connections due to a variety of factors, but the demands for the service can also overload the servers and affect performance speeds. At the end of December 2013, Netflix had an outage that affected users in the United States, Canada and Latin America, and originally had no time frame for when the site would be back up, Slash Gear reported. While the provider stated that the problems had been fixed about an hour after the outage occurred, many users continued to have issues connecting to their profiles. This development is significant as many subscribers use the program to binge watch seasons of their favorite shows and movies. With the outage, this viewing experience was effectively interrupted and preventing users from accessing their content.
As the bandwidth capacity overflows with demands, the servers will react with lower resolution streaming and slower processing times, which will further frustrate users. Investing in Blu-ray based media will ease the irritation and provide a much more dependable viewing option rather than dealing with bandwidth complications and lagging speeds..
Net neutrality rulings pose further problems
One of the biggest considerations going before the Supreme Court has been the issue of Net neutrality. Essentially, many Internet service providers are currently making it so that streaming services like Netflix run at sub-optimal speeds over their Internet connections. Organizations like Comcast do this in order to entice users to choose their viewing services instead. However, Net neutrality would make all ISPs treat online services equally, meaning that streaming providers like Netflix would provide speeds that users are expecting, according to the Associated Press. The court's ruling wasn't in favor of total neutrality, opting instead to allow services like Netflix to pay the ISPs for premium quality streaming. Depending on how much high-definition content is being viewed, Netflix could be billed $144 million to $1 billion annually for streaming its content over ISP networks. This is especially critical as the application accounts for 15 percent of residential broadband use in the U.S. alone. With the mounting costs for ISP quality, Netflix may be forced to raise user subscription fees, which could result in a loss of customers.
"Netflix Inc. could still refuse to pay if the cable and telecommunications companies selling most of high-speed Internet access demand more money," according to the source. "But that option would risk diminishing the quality of Netflix's video streaming to the frustration of its 31 million U.S. subscribers who pay $8 per month for the service."
As the Olympics near the horizon, one of the most watched events around the world, Netflix is expected to take an additional hit in the near future. While the future is still uncertain for streaming applications, users will find more benefits using Blu-ray media for the watching needs. Blu-ray provides users with constant accessibility and reliable quality, which is more than can be said for streaming services.
"But nothing is exactly as it seems, particularly in the new frontier of streaming video," according to The Oklahoman. "While Netflix stock took a slight hit on the news of the ruling, the story of Net neutrality is probably not over."