Netflix nears 100 million subscribers worldwide

While its subscriber growth slowed in Q1 2017, Netflix ended the period with a total of 98.7 million streaming memberships, consisting of 50.8 million in the USA and 47.9 million internationally.

Netflix net additions were slightly down on the comparable period last year partly because the launch of popular political drama House of Cards Season 5 has moved from Q1 to Q2 this year. The Los Gatos, California, company earned $178 million on revenue of $2.6 billion in the first quarter.

Along with posting strong earnings Monday, US-based Netflix reported a net increase of 4.95 million subscribers, most of those overseas where it has been investing in becoming a global entertainment network. Netflix had previously frozen prices for millions of subscribers at 2014 levels.

The company can do that in a number of ways, including producing more market-specific worldwide content. Beating analyst predictions of 2.4 million additional users for what is generally regarded as the slow quarter, the company managed to gain 3.2 million, Reuters reports. After leaving the premium cable TV stalwart in the dust - Netflix is about to motor past 100 million subs - it has a new benchmark of bigness: YouTube.

In comparison, Netflix gained 7.05 million subscribers in the prior quarter, raising expectations in the market.

Around 51 million of Netflix's users are from the U.S. By the end of 2017, Piper Jaffray analyst Michael Olson anticipates the bulk of the company's subscribers to be from outside the nation.

Netflix added 1.42 million domestic subscribers, slightly below guidance and consensus of 1.5 million, and directionally consistent with Baird's quarterly US survey which had suggested potential USA weakness. "And so, it's a very large pool of time".

As it is, Netflix expects to spend about $6 billion on programming this year. During which, Netflix has scored 72 million more subscribers. The streaming service is also benefiting from original content. If the current trend continues, Netflix could become a global powerhouse that trumps any broadcasting giant in any country.

It's not YouTube's ad dollars Hastings is envious of (the streaming service remains solidly committed to subscription revenue) but the number of eyeballs it attracts. But, it insisted that the opportunity for growth was "gigantic".

When asked about competition from HBO and Amazon, Hastings asserted that the market was big enough for all of them.

  • Zachary Reyes