Companies Netflix Kills Notion of Offline Playback; Says it Will “Never Happen” Published 4 years ago on December 18, 2014 By Clay Michael Gillespie Three years ago, Lenovo unveiled their IdeaPad K1 technology that was supposed to shake up the way people use Netflix. One of the major caveats to the IdeaPad was that Netflix was reportedly going to be able to stream natively on the device, boiling down to one major selling point: Offline Playback. Various news outlets covered the possibility of Netflix offline playback, and Engadget writer Peter Rojas even wrote an op-ed to Netflix and Hulu about caching programming for offline viewing. I know I can’t be the only one out there who’d love to be able to load up my phone or tablet with a few hours of movies and shows before getting on airplane, or just to be able to watch something while I’m out of the house without having to worry about chewing up my battery by pulling down all that data over 4G. Rojas made a strong business argument for enabling offline playback too, noting that Spotify and Rhapsody both allow for offline caching; a major reason so many people sign up for their monthly subscriptions. Unfortunately, that was two years ago. Over all this time, all users have been able to hope for is the chance that Netflix or Hulu roll out the option to subscribers. Until Netflix came out and shot down the idea once and for all, leaving no wiggle room for speculation. Netflix Not Chasing the Offline Caching Demand Cliff Edwards, the director of corporate communications and technology at Netflix, recently talked to TechRadar about the prospects of offline playback and caching. To put it bluntly, TechRadar reported he said the following: It’s never going to happen. He also said that five years from now he doesn’t believe anyone will be talking about offline playback, noting that he thinks it’s a “short term fix for a bigger problem.” This instance isn’t the first time Netflix pushed away the idea off offline playback, though it is the most direct and succinct. During 2012, in another interview with TechRadar, Netflix cloud architect Adrian Cockroft said that while there are some user cases where streaming isn’t best used, it’s a small portion of the market that Netflix doesn’t believe would be beneficial to pursue. Another Argument for Netflix Offline Playback To be fair, Netflix does have their plate full, and their business plan set. They’ve become the face of the movement for net neutrality and are cranking out new seasons of shows left and right. With Google working to bring internet access all over the world, the overall digital landscape looks good for Netflix outside of the United States. They’re right; there simply isn’t much demand for an offline playback service. Also Read: Firefox Phones Could Bring Bitcoin to Developing World However, the argument for its use could come sooner rather than later for Netflix. At Comcast, the opposition leader of net neutrality, their service XFINITY announced that they would begin rolling out plans to charge for data usage on home internet similarly to the way cell phone companies charge for data. The glaring question, of course, is why? Comcast is quite vilified in the consumer eye and media as it is; why would they decide it would be a good idea to roll out this service? Well, don’t worry, they’ll tell you. “As the marketplace and technology change, we do too. We evaluate customer data usage, and a variety of other factors, and make adjustments accordingly. Over the last several years, we have periodically reviewed various plans, and recently we have been analyzing the market and our process through various data usage plan trials.” So they give no real reason under their frequently asked questions category, but it’s easy to tell that this plan would be most beneficial to their company financially. What does this have to do with Netflix? Well, if I’m paying to use my home Wi-Fi to stream House of Cards in the future, I’m not going to want to pay $1 per GB I use for the service. If I could download it onto my device though, I would be able to live with not giving Comcast a single dime more than the cost it took to cache the file. Netflix may say that they’ll never offer offline playback, but they should keep the idea in the back of their minds. Especially when they have a chance to seriously financially injure the company trying to put them out of business. Images from Netflix and Shutterstock. Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink. Rate this post: Important for improving the service. Please add a comment in the comment field below explaining what you rated and why you gave it that rate. Failed Trade Recommendations should not be rated as that is considered a failure either way. (0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5)You need to be a registered member to rate this. Loading... Clay Michael Gillespie Clay Gillespie a writer and reporter for many different platforms across the tech industry. He holds a B.S. in Public Relations from Ball State University, and freelances for different clients in technology and cryptocurrency. For more information, visit his personal website, claygillespie.com. Follow @HackedCom Feedback or Requests? Related Topics:Cliff EdwardsComcastFirefoxGoogleXFINITY Up Next Spectre Script Leaked – Hacking James Bond, Sony Don't Miss Hackers Release Seventh Data Dump From Sony Pictures You may like Trans-Fee Mining: Investigating FCOIN and The Future Pre-Market: Stocks Grind Higher as Google Beats, Turkish Lira Tumbles Stock Picks: MAC, DRNA, CMCSA, SHOO and ABEO FAANG Stocks are Bleeding after Google’s Quarterly Results Crypto Update: Selling Pressure Intensifies Again as Google Bans Crypto-Ads Daily Analysis: Nasdaq Leads Bull Stampede on Wall Street 3 Comments 3 Comments Paul Madore December 18, 2014 at 12:07 pm If the major cable companies start to do this in markets where they have monopolies, we can only hope that the settlements will put them out of business and make room for honest competition. Personally, I’m fortunate to use a smaller cable company that gives us a really good deal and great service. Log in to Reply one who knows December 18, 2014 at 2:19 pm uh.. yeah.. I get offline play with amazon just fine.. and their selection, content is getting so much better, I find myself there more and on Netflix less.. the only reason we still have Netflix is so the kids can watch the same cartoon 300 times.. not much else.. Log in to Reply RJF December 30, 2014 at 2:32 pm “It’s never going to happen.” Right, never, is it even possible to count the number of times we have heard that six months prior to it happening? I predict it will happen and within a year just because he said “never” Netflix is on the way out, better services exist… Log in to Reply You must be logged in to post a comment Login Leave a Reply Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment. Business Uber: $120 Billion IPO? Published 3 days ago on October 16, 2018 By Sam Bourgi Uber Technologies Inc., the global ride-hailing giant, is reportedly eyeing an initial public offering (IPO) worth as much as $120 billion. According to The Wall Street Journal, the IPO could take place early next year, giving investors ample time to prepare. More Valuable than the Auto Giants The $120 billion value proposal was delivered to Uber last month by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) and Morgan Stanley (MS), two of Wall Street’s largest banks. The banks were presumably advising Uber on how to position stock offerings to potential investors before underwriting the IPO. The new valuation far exceeds the one Uber received from Toyota Motors Co (TYO), which priced the ride-sharing service at %72 billion. At $120 billion, Uber would be worth more than the General Motors Co (GM), Ford Motor Co (F) and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) combined. The Detroit auto giants have seen their valuations rise in the wake of the financial crisis, buoyed by a prolonged recovery and increased appetite for automobiles. However, their growth has paled in comparison to Uber’s, which was founded in 2009. Uber’s expansion hasn’t been without growing pains. The company has been mired by regulatory bottlenecks, workplace scandals and the alleged theft of trade secrets from Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL), Google’s parent company. It is not entirely clear what metrics the Wall Street banks used to evaluate Uber’s potential value. The company reportedly told Morgan Stanley it won’t be profitable for at least another three years, though annual revenues are expected to reach up to $11 billion this year. That’s a marked rise over the $7.78 billion generated in 2017. While there’s no guarantee that Uber will go public in the proposed timeframe, it must issue a public offering by the end of 2019, according to WSJ sources. That’s the agreement it has in place with investor SoftBank Group Corp. Uber by the Numbers Uber’s startling growth over the past nine years can be represented by a few statistics. As of May 8, 2018, the company had 19,000 employees. This doesn’t include the more than 3 million drivers who are getting paid through the ride-hailing service. Since inception, Uber drivers have completed some 10 billion rides. This averages out to about 15 million rides each day. Gross bookings in 2016 alone amounted to $20 billion. As of June, 75 million riders were using the Uber app. In the U.S. alone, adult users are projected to reach 48 million by the end of 2018. The Uber app is installed on 21% of U.S. adult Android devices. Currently, Uber owns up to 87% of the U.S. ride-hailing market. The growth and widespread adoption of the service has opened the door to other competitors, with Lyft being the biggest. Founded in 2012, Lyft is available in about 220 cities across the U.S. as well as in major cities across Asia. Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink. Rate this post: Important for improving the service. Please add a comment in the comment field below explaining what you rated and why you gave it that rate. Failed Trade Recommendations should not be rated as that is considered a failure either way. (2 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)You need to be a registered member to rate this. Loading... Sam Bourgi 4.6 stars on average, based on 647 rated postsSam Bourgi is Chief Editor to Hacked.com, where he specializes in cryptocurrency, economics and the broader financial markets. Sam has nearly eight years of progressive experience as an analyst, writer and financial market commentator where he has contributed to the world's foremost newscasts. Follow @HackedCom Feedback or Requests? Continue Reading Business Argo Mining as a Means of Diversification Published 5 days ago on October 14, 2018 By William Bartlett Buying Bitcoin (or any cryptocurrency) is something we talk about a lot, but earning crypto is just as interesting. There are many ways to earn crypto that allow for arbitrage-like opportunities, but the focus of this piece is on mining companies. More specifically, Argo Mining, which is the first cryptocurrency mining company to IPO. That might not sound like a big deal, but it gives Argo a critical competitive advantage over other companies. The Mining Industry One thing is clear right now, the mining industry is still very opaque. Users are constantly worried about being scammed, which is very similar to how it was when trading exchanges were popping up left and right. There are numerous options out there for companies that will help you mine cryptocurrency, but it isn’t always clear what the best choice is. You can go one of two routes: have a mining application operate on your computer, or pay for a rented service. Honeyminer is an example of a native application that works well and pays out cryptocurrency, and Argo is an example of a “shared service”. Argo operates much like Amazon Web Services does. You pay to rent computational capabilities, but your goals end up being slightly different. The business models are sound, but very different. Where Argo’s Advantage Comes From Argo is the first mining company to IPO, which adds a level of trust that no other company can currently command. There are so many potential risks for users that they tend to shy away from these companies. They are worried about their payment information being ripped off, withdrawal of the coins, and the costs being greater than the revenues. By raising $32 million in their June 11th IPO, Argo has alleviated many of these worries, and added a degree of trust to their brand. They started off mostly mining altcoins such as Bitcoin Gold, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, and Zcash, but have recently announced Bitcoin mining packages as well. The overall goal of Argo, as stated by their CEO, Jonathan Bixbay, is to democratize mining so everyone can participate. Right now, most of the mining is done by a select few of the elites, and Argo is enabling the wealth to be spread here. Can Argo Actually Make You Money? The big question to answer about Argo is whether you can actually make money doing this. The costs per month could potentially be higher than the value of the crypto you mine. Sure, you don’t have to pay trading fees on them, but it is important to calculate exactly how much you are coming out ahead. It depends on the package, but you could potentially end up paying more for the fees than you earn. The trick is to remember that the crypto market isn’t like other markets – it isn’t perfectly efficient – and there are always arbitrage opportunities if you look hard enough. An Alternate Route to Being Long Crypto With much of crypto mining currently being done by elites because of the massive investment involved, it is clear that Argo has tapped a massive market. The company had a waitlist of 50,000 in September, and with the funds from the IPO, they can finally finance the expansion of their operations in a way that will speed up the number of people they can bring online. If you believe Bitcoin (or cryptocurrencies in general) is coming out of a rut soon, then this is a good way to diversify into the market. Do your own tests and make sure that you are coming out ahead after the fees, but it should be a simple way to make some extra money in what is currently an inefficient market. Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink. Rate this post: Important for improving the service. Please add a comment in the comment field below explaining what you rated and why you gave it that rate. Failed Trade Recommendations should not be rated as that is considered a failure either way. (0 votes, average: 0.00 out of 5)You need to be a registered member to rate this. Loading... William Bartlett 4.1 stars on average, based on 41 rated posts Follow @HackedCom Feedback or Requests? Continue Reading Companies Crypto Market Development: Goldman Sachs-Backed Circle Acquires Crowdfunding Platform Published 2 weeks ago on October 6, 2018 By Ken Chigbo Goldman Sachs-backed Circle has announced it has acquired SeedInvest. The fee has not been disclosed. SeedInvest are a crowdfunding platform. Circle are planning to expand SeedInvest’s offerings to support cryptocurrencies. The Goldman Sachs funded crypto start up Circle, are really stepping up their dominance within the market. Over the past two days, there has been a couple positive developments from their camp. Firstly, the firm has acquired crowdfunding platform SeedInvest. Elsewhere, they have added a new feature for their app, known as Collections. Circle Acquires SeedInvest Circle Internet Financial is acquiring SeedInvest. Should all be approved by regulators, the company are targeting the strategy of delivering a token marketplace. This will enable businesses as well as individuals to raise capital and interact with investors using open crypto rails and infrastructure. Circle will want to make it easier for startups to issue digital coins. The scope also to facilitate customers to trade a larger variety of digital tokens. A full statement can be observed by their latest blog. Collections Another development from Circle, coming in the form of adding a new feature, is “Collections”. This will allow its users to invest in a particular theme. The following themes offered are “Platforms, Payments, and Privacy.” Users will be able to invest in an entire theme, with a single click. Providing a simplified way for investors portfolio be focused on multiple coins. Full coverage was posted within a blog from the company. Market Review These developments continue to cement the huge improvements being observed across the market. The sky appears to be the limit, as the digital currency sector does not stop having its infrastructure solidified. Updates such as the announcements from Circle, demonstrate capabilities are not limited. See previous acknowledgement points of the sector taking big legitimizing steps, in a prior Litecoin article, under the section ‘Big Infrastructure Improvement In The Crypto Market’. The one thing that will likely continue to slowdown the market is regulation. This will have to be the case for the foreseeable future. As revolutionizing as the industry is, regulators must remain cautious for the sake of all parties involved. Their concerns remain about the safety of investors that want to participate in the marketplace as well as ensuring that anti-money laundering protocols are maintained. In the long run, it is in the best interest of all those involved. Besides all of this, there is still remains some way to go for complete a complete solid system, in comparison to the traditional financial system. Disclaimer: The author owns bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies. He holds investment positions in the coins, but does not engage in short-term or day-trading. Featured image courtesy of Shutterstock. Important: Never invest (trade with) money you can't afford to comfortably lose. Always do your own research and due diligence before placing a trade. Read our Terms & Conditions here. Trade recommendations and analysis are written by our analysts which might have different opinions. Read my 6 Golden Steps to Financial Freedom here. Best regards, Jonas Borchgrevink. Rate this post: Important for improving the service. Please add a comment in the comment field below explaining what you rated and why you gave it that rate. Failed Trade Recommendations should not be rated as that is considered a failure either way. (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)You need to be a registered member to rate this. Loading... Ken Chigbo 4.5 stars on average, based on 32 rated postsKen has over 8 years exposure to the financial markets. During a large part of his career, he worked as an analyst, covering a variety of asset classes; forex, fixed income, commodities, equities and cryptocurrencies. Ken has gone on to become a regular contributor across several large news and analysis outlets. Follow @HackedCom Feedback or Requests? 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