Netflix is not the only online streaming television and movie service, but to the chagrin of the other big name players, is the service that is making many of the headlines about this kind of television viewing service. In the last few years, Netflix and similar services have changed how many people view their favorite television shows and recent, or classic, movies. Instead of needing to be home at a certain time in order to watch a particular show, or of setting a device to record a particular show, Netflix allows consumers to watch their specific show without the interruption of advertisements whenever and, increasingly, wherever they want. Netflix has recently announced that it is available around the world and usage is still rapidly increasing. The company's Chief Executive, Reed Hastings, announced at the Consumer Electronics Showcase event today that in the fourth quarter of 2015, subscribers consumed 12 billion hours of Netflix, which is up from 8.25 billion hours for the fourth quarter, 2014. During the course of 2015, customers viewed a total of 42.5 billion hours of streaming video during the whole of the year.
Reed explained that the increase in viewing may be attributed to several factors – these being that average Internet speeds are increasing, which means more customers are better able to enjoy online streaming video services. Furthermore, devices such as tablets and smartphones are becoming better able to handle video streaming. Not least is how Netflix has aggressively expanded across the world and has invested a significant sum of money into producing its own television shows. On the subject of Netflix's content, Reed said: "Netflix was the first to put up all episodes of a show at once, to give consumers complete control, and to start the binge era. Each day we're getting better and better at delighting our members."
Now that the world is covered, Netflix is likely to continue to experience growth strong growth in subscriber numbers and hours of video watched for at least the next few years. The business has been reinvesting money into producing its own television shows and refining the streaming and broadcasting services and technologies used. It will be interesting to see how the service evolves during 2016.