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Netflix Killing DVDs Like Apple Killed Floppies?

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the steve-did-it-in-the-library-with-one-button dept.

Media 345

cheezitmike writes "While there has been lots of outcry about Netflix separating their DVD service from their streaming service, media expert Eric Garland says they're just doing to the DVD what Apple did to the floppy disk. 'I was reminded of so many precedents: Facebook revamping its user interface, the introduction of the first Blueberry iMac, the one with the conspicuously missing 3.5-inch floppy drive on the front. All of these were moments when there was a paradigm shift that led to an immediate public outcry. People made a lot of noise and had a lot of complaints. People were very upset about these shifts...until they weren't. In the news cycle, the outcry is significant and it is problematic, but it's also important to note how quickly these things are forgotten.'"

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Wheeee (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849734)

first post

Apple (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849740)

What did apple do to floppies?

Re:Apple (2, Funny)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849832)

You don't remember? They went around, door to door, and stole the floppy drive from every macintosh ever created. You had a Mac with a built-in floppy drive? Too bad asshole, now you need to shell out for an external floppy drive.

Or maybe they introduced a new line of computers without a floppy drive and the comparison doesn't apply.

Re:Apple (3, Funny)

Canazza (1428553) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849868)

Everyone knows AOL killed the floppy disk when they gave everyone a CD ROM with the whole Internet on it.

Re:Apple (3, Interesting)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850032)

LOL....but getting back on topic...

I don't get it...I'm surprised I see as many people as I do opting for streaming over the disks from Netflix with this price rise. Is this mainly people that do not have a nice HD tv to watch on.....?

I mean, I've been with netflix since 2000. I've always been on the 3 out at a time...and upgraded to bluray.

The streaming, was a nice add on...for free.

However, I pretty much only used streaming (when I could find something good in the very limited selection) for older shows or movies that weren't very high quality source material.

But for newer movies or shows...I'm always opting for bluray rental. I mean, I didn't shell out over $2K for a 59" plasma HD tv (and I have a sound system to back up the great image) to just watch substandard source material on. I mean, streaming can't match the quality video/audio that I get on a bluray disk.

*sigh*....are there really that few people today that care about quality audio and video? I guess. Then again, I"m one of those that has refused to buy music online until it comes in a lossless format with no DRM. I buy CD's....and rip them myself to lossy formats for portable players in lesser listening environments (gym, car)...but I'd rather have the best source I can get for my living room where I have spent years since my childhood building a quality audio/video system. I'm not talking about the crazy audiophile stuff you hear about (frozen cables for $1K/ft, etc)...but solid equipment.

Ok...enough said...I ramble...but if you do ignore the audio aspect of it...most of the good HD tv's coming out today DO present an awesome picture, so, just wondering...why so many people settle for streaming when they spent so much $$ on a quality HDTV?

Re:Apple (2)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849846)

I'm not sure, but I think it involved Vaseline, peanut brittle, and a keg.

Re:Apple (2)

justsomebody (525308) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850112)

it is quite simple. their brilliant move away from floppies was like this
- apple stopped deploying floppy drive with G3 and replaced it with another even more abysmal technology... zip drive, which off course flopped badly for its disks being so easy corruptable.
- G4 stopped zip nonsense, leaving users complaining how there was no external device where they could save data to. floppy removed, no more scsi, cd-rom by default and lack of any usb external device. you couldn't believe how many usb floppies were sold in that time for macs. company i worked for in that time sold few more than they sold macs
but who are we to judge what steve the holly decided it is best for their users

I for one simply stopped using floppies in 486 era as soon as i bought my first cd recorder. never bought one floppy drive after that

ha (5, Insightful)

nomadic (141991) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849760)

Apple has never been relevant enough on the desktop to kill any desktop technology. PC CD-Rs and then the internet killed floppy drives.

Re:ha (5, Insightful)

Stormthirst (66538) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849802)

That and cheap USB keys which were faster, considerably more reliable and many times the capacity.

Re:ha (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849844)

yeah, flash drives and zip disks, pretty much everything killed the floppy... 1.44 meg wasn't really gonna last you know...

Re:ha (1)

Missing.Matter (1845576) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849850)

Don't forget USB thumb drives. It just so happens that around the same time Apple started killing floppies in their machines, generic plug and play USB thumb drives started to come available for PCs.

Re:ha (1)

Rifter13 (773076) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849914)

I didn't think thumb drives came until later. I thought it was RW CDs/DVDs that brought the end of the floppy, though, they were not nearly as simple to use as floppy disks, hence the need for thumb drives.

Re:ha (2)

Missing.Matter (1845576) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850048)

Oh they did come later than CDRs, but nothing truly replace the functionality of the floppy until thumb drives. USB drives were small and portable, robust, rewritable, sharable, and as of Windows 2000/ME could be plugged into almost any computer. Still they were more expensive than the floppy, but of course that changed rapidly.

Re:ha (1)

EvanED (569694) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850072)

Personally I'd say it was at least a couple years between the iMac and thumb drives. I was in high school when they started putting in iMacs, and I was trucking files back and forth on floppies for a couple years. You had to make sure to get one of the couple Macs with external floppies if you did that (or use one of their Dells). And while my family wasn't on the bleeding bleeding edge, we were definitely towards it. We had Excite@Home cable for at least a year before they imploded, and I still remember using a 2x, parallel-port CD burner.

Re:ha (1)

Flea of Pain (1577213) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849934)

Wait! Floppies are dead? But...but...that means I am working in a graveyard! I am pretty sure that should be illegal.

Seriously though, floppies still have their use. A quick reliable way to boot an old machine up and run small utilities? Pass the 'dead' disk please!

Re:ha (1)

YodasEvilTwin (2014446) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849974)

A quick reliable way to boot an old machine up

Why would you want to do that? (I'll make an exception if you work for a charity or something that won't waste donations on modern hardware).

Re:ha (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36850088)

They're not very useful (except as paperweights, I guess) if you don't boot them at least once...

Re:ha (3, Insightful)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850128)

Why would you want to do that? (I'll make an exception if you work for a charity or something that won't waste donations on modern hardware).

Older hardware has it uses. I mean, you don't need a brand new, screaming i7 multi-core box with SLI graphics cards to run a home firewall with iptables, don't need it to make a nice little audio server for the home stereo to host your music collection ripped to flac, etc.

I am by NO stretch of the imagination a 'green' person, tree hugger or someone who has ever bothered with recycling anything...BUT, hey, if something is still useful, why spend money on something new if the old will keep working reliably for awhile longer?

Re:ha (1)

TimeOut42 (314783) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850218)

Can you actually still buy a computer with a floppy drive in it?

Re:ha (3, Insightful)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849954)

somehow they were relevant enough to push and make popular by being early adopters, even of tech they didn't invent and even of things others sold but didn't make wildly popular. USB, Firewire, SCSI, gui with mouse, touch smartphones,

Re:ha (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36850220)

somehow they were relevant enough to identify and use obvious existing standards like every other computer maker, even of tech they didn't invent and even of things others sold but didn't make wildly popular. USB, Firewire, SCSI, gui with mouse, touch smartphones,


E-mail killed floppies (3, Insightful)

rwade (131726) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849976)

I would say that the wide-adoption of corporate/small-business e-mail systems in the mid-late 90s killed the floppy disk. Up until then, legal assistants, secretaries, financial analysts, and other workers on the lower-rungs would truck a floppy disk from desk to desk to collaborate with colleagues, present work to the boss, or deliver documents to clients. With e-mail, the small files that could go on floppy disks could more easily be sent more easily with even the slower LAN and shared-internet connections.

Re:ha (1)

JBMcB (73720) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849988)

They might not have killed anything, but they sure as hell popularized it. How many USB peripherials did you see before the iMac came out? USB was around at the time - I have a Gateway P100 with USB ports on it from the late 90's. Couldn't find anything to plug into them until the iMac came out - then nearly all the available peripherals were in some garish color, or translucent, to match the iMac.

Re:ha (2)

Missing.Matter (1845576) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850096)

The iMac came out in 1998.... the same year as a little known operating system that found its way on to 90% of computers and also happened to include native USB support.

Re:ha (2)

TimeOut42 (314783) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850292)

Nope, I had a Diamond RIO Mp3 player (huge full size HD w/ an LCD Screen), keyboards, mice, cameras, etc. Apple's baby was Firewire, not USB. Apple had Zip to do with the passing of floppies.

It was the increase in the RAM in computers which resulted in much larger programs being written. Since high speed network connectivity didn't really exist, there had to be a different medium to install all these huge programs; 30 disks just wasn't going to cut it. So, the next logical choice at the time was either Zip Drives or CD-roms. Zip drives were slow and too expensive to have any real staying power, so it fell to CDs. The next step after that was DVDs. Now that we have better connectivity we are seeing external media beginning to make it's exit.

But, it certainly wasn't Apple that drove that cart off the cliff.


Re:ha (2)

eln (21727) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850046)

Cheap CD-R drives and the ability in basically every BIOS to boot directly from a CD completely killed any advantage the floppy had. Apple's decision to stop putting floppy drives in their computers was a response to the already-obvious obsolescence of the technology. They didn't kill the floppy, it was already dead by that point. PC makers kept including floppy drives in their machines for a while after that because some PC buyers wanted them for some reason and they were so cheap as to be practically free for OEMs.

Re:ha (1)

Dahamma (304068) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850118)

That's why it's a perfect analogy! Netflix has about as much influence over the DVD business right now. They are equal levels of ridiculous hyperbole...

Netflix often doesn't even have new releases on DVD for the first month they are out, and it takes them years, if ever, to get a movie on their streaming service after it's on DVD. That's not a particularly good way to "replace" something...

Re:ha (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850176)

I would disagree. Even though in sales Apple wasn't so great. They had the public eye. Especially with the iMacs, A dramatic change from the White/Gray/Beige/Black (The Gray and Black PC were often for specialized systems) boxed PC Boxes that was so common. The Multi-colored Cute iMacs really got the public eye. (the first Girl friendly PC with enough processing power to allow a guy to use it without laughing) It got a lot of news attention. And other PC manufacturers took notice (Dell, Gateway 2000, Compaq). None of these companies really cared for putting in Floppy Disks in their system, Odd Sized Ribbon Cable, makes assembly more difficult, A component with a lot of moving parts exposed to the environment making it a high point of failure, slow speed, and taking up a drive bay where you could put some more cooler tech in it. But they wouldn't dare getting rid of it, because people still had floppies and used them (heck at the time I had a 5 1/2 and a 3 1/2 floppy on my modern Desktop) And if they were first to do so could cause their competitors to break in and take their share. Apple had the gut to do it... Or they were just desperate and realized that they just couldn't make a floppy fit in that little computer and have it priced as it was.

But people bought the iMacs because they were cute... Then if they needed to transfer a file they demanded that it would be stored on a network or burned onto CD, then shortly after that people used Floppies less and less.
CD-R did help put people at ease about getting rid of floppies but CD-R wasn't really an appropriate replacement for the floppy. They were expensive add-on when the iMac came out and for a long time, even after floppies were well in the range of fading away.

No. (4, Interesting)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849764)

No, it's nothing like that. CD-ROMs were already well adopted by the time floppies came along, and there was no licensing issue going from floppy to optical media the way there is when going from optical to streaming.

So no, the comparison isn't meaningful.

Re:No. (1)

jaymz666 (34050) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849838)

Floppies only hold 1.44MB of data, compared to 640MB for a CD. It was capacity that killed the floppy. Reliability, too.

Re:No. (1, Interesting)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849910)

You're missing the point -- it's got nothing to do with one medium being "better" than another. People aren't clamoring to convert to BD-R disks even though they hold 10x what you can cram onto a DVD-R.

The problem is and always has been that a new storage medium has to become cheap enough at the right time to solve a real problem, and it has to work well enough to convince people to spend time and money switching.

By the time floppies "died," they were well-past their sell-by date, and CD-R drives were not new.

Re:No. (2)

jaymz666 (34050) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849962)

No, I guess my point is that we went from installing an application on 27 floppies in which one could be bad and kill the whole process, to installing an application on a single CD.
Since DVDs are RO, that's what my comparison is based on

Re:No. (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850166)

DVDs are read only?
Since when? I have a stack of a 100 blanks here that says different.

Re:No. (1)

jaymz666 (34050) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850228)

The DVDs you get from netflix are. Which seems to be the topic of this entire post.

Re:No. (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850200)

People here are having trouble separating "computers stopped coming with floppy drives" and "I was using CD-Rs long before machines stopped using floppies" ... also this is a thread about Netflix but the off-topic mod isn't being used properly.

Re:No. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849908)

What in the hell are you talking about? Floppies "came along" and became widespread in the 70s. CD-ROMs didn't even exist until the 80s and weren't widely adopted until the early 90s.

Re:No. (1)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850052)

You know what I meant. I just can't go back and edit posts, because that feature hasn't "come along" yet in the world of Slashdot. :)

Re:No. (1)

mswhippingboy (754599) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850278)

I feel your pain. The problem is, on /., once you misplace a semicolon or put an apostrophe in the wrong place your credibility goes out the window regardless of the actual point you were trying to make.

Re:No. (2)

mswhippingboy (754599) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849984)

CD-ROMs were already well adopted by the time floppies came along.


.gnola emac seippolf emit eht by detpoda llew ydaela erew sMOR-DC

There, FTFA.

Re:No. (2, Interesting)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849994)

Uh, sorry, but that's simply not true.

Floppy disks were around long before the CD was invented, much less the CD-ROM.

Re:No. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36850230)

Oh come on, let the iDIOTS think they matter...

(Captcha: flamed :-P)

Huh? (1)

Desler (1608317) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849768)

So the premise of this article is that Netflix is separating out the DVD service in order to kill it and... makes less revenue? How does that make sense? Secondly, Netflix is a tiny player in the entertainment industry and would have negligible impact on the lifespan of DVDs anyway.

Re:Huh? (1)

Stormthirst (66538) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849894)

I don't have access to Netflix's financials, but I do have to wonder about the cost of mailing out DVDs and how that effects their bottom line. I don't know what they are paying for their mail outs, but I don't see that cost going down any time soon.

Bandwidth on the other hand has had a general decrease in cost over time. Would you need to employee less people if you were streaming only?

Having said all that, I agree that DVDs aren't going away any time soon. I suspect the studios pushing Blu-ray or similar technology will have far more of an affect. Do Netflix stream Blu-ray quality films? (And therefore high bandwidth leading to higher costs)

Re:Huh? (1)

bhcompy (1877290) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850148)

Bandwidth may cost less, but unlimited bandwidth plans are going the way of the dodo. So, regardless of the cost of bandwidth, bandwidth is becoming a finite resource for an increasing number of people.

Re:Huh? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850244)

Only on 3G and other wireless connections.

Re:Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36850192)

Ok, I hate the grammar police as much as the next guy but you seriously need to look up the definitions of effect [] and affect [] . You managed to use them both incorrectly in your post. I'll give you a pass on one, but not two.

The cost according to Netflix (1)

Quila (201335) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850236)

That the cost of streaming a movie 1/20th of the cost of DVD mailing. []

At $8 per month, Netflix may not even be making a profit off of someone with a single DVD plan who always has a one-day turnaround.

instant streaming is really only a supplement (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849778)

It won't really replace DVDs until the selection matches the DVD selection

like apple killed usb (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849790)

with its amazing firewire technology!

Re:like apple killed usb (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850092)

my pc and laptop have firewire ports along with the USB, probably thanks largely to Apple. For a while was better than USB, and also I used it to simulate shared SAN-attached disk for clustering for some projects

Totally false analogy. (5, Informative)

Kenja (541830) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849792)

Apple did not build their business model on providing floppy disks to people like Netflix did with DVDs. What's more, floppy disks faded into disuse due to higher capacity formats being available. With ISP data caps and poor streaming quality, DVDs are simply better for most people compared to streaming only service.

All Netflix is doing is chasing away customers. The reasons behind this can be debated, costs etc, but the end result is the same. More money for less service means fewer customers.

Re:Totally false analogy. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849964)

But who cares if new_customers * new_price > old_customers * old_price ?

Re:Totally false analogy. (1)

houghi (78078) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850184)

Perhaps it is more along the lines of "O woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle." so it might be the correct analogy after all.

Apple did not kill floppies.
Netflux does not kill DVDs.

Re:Totally false analogy. (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850212)

DVD are not really that much better compared to streaming you probably need to get off dialup.

Uh...NO! (1)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849800)

Considering that Internet access is FAR removed from Universal and it's prohibitively expensive for many areas to stream video, I think not.

Not yet. (2)

kehren77 (814078) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849808)

Maybe if they offered their entire DVD library via streaming. But even then, there are still many people who don't have streaming hooked up to their TV or are in a rural area where they have no access to broadband.

Re:Not yet. (1)

Registered Coward v2 (447531) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850060)

Maybe if they offered their entire DVD library via streaming. But even then, there are still many people who don't have streaming hooked up to their TV or are in a rural area where they have no access to broadband.

I think those are the key points - until the back catalog of DVD movies / TV shows is available via streaming the DVD is likely, in some incarnation, here to stay. Even then, there is a sizable segment of the market for whom streaming is simply not an option. In addition, until there is a good way to save streamed material for times when there is no access available DVD's will still be a preferred medium.

In addition, the fight over bandwidth caps and who can pays for usage will delay the adoption of streaming (and app d/l) until the big players work out a payment scheme that satisfies all of them. Right now, the ISPs have the upper hand since they can simply make it cost ineffective to stream any significant amount of content, or more importantly, replace cable and its revenue. Once the major ISPs own enough content providers to shift revenue from access to content I think we'll see a large shift in how content is delivered.

As Deep Throat said: "Follow the money..."

Hyperbole much? (1)

mythandros (973986) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849812)

The notion that Netflix has sufficient influence over DVDs to kill them is patently absurd.

Re:Hyperbole much? (1)

kwerle (39371) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849940)

Just about on par with Apple killing floppies.

But maybe it's playing out the same. Apple saw the writing on the wall. There was great wailing and gnashing of teeth, but after 2-3 years, nobody talked about floppies any more.

Is Netflix right? Is DVD movie distribution going the way of the floppy?

I was totally ready for floppies to go away 5 years before Apple made their move. But I could get anything on the network that I could get on a floppy. The same is not really true of DVDs, yet.

Re:Hyperbole much? (1)

Deadplant (212273) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850014)

aha! maybe that was the point?
the notion that Apple killed floppies is absurd... and so is the idea that netflix is/could kill DVDs so....
Yes, Netflix is killing DVDs the way Apple killed floppies.
which is to say, not at all.

No (4, Informative)

jaymz666 (34050) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849816)

Have you seen the lines at redbox units on the weekend? Four and five people deep at out local Kroger, with two redbox vending machines.

Re:No (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849912)

Never underestimate the bandwidth of a shopping bag loaded with DVDs.

Well, okay, the bandwidth isn't that great, perhaps, but I'm pretty sure you'd hit your ISP's 'unlimited' (FUCK YOU ISPS) cap well before you'd hit the bag's maximum capacity. :p

Re:No (2)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850058)

Yup, that's how I watch movies because a large chunk of our U.S. internet is behind third world class in its ability to stream or even deliver movies in a timely manner. AT&T's trickle of a pipe (3 MB/sec) isn't sufficient with my family of four and my various other IT things going.

Re:No (1)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850070)

heh, that's 3 mbit /sec and no they can't or won't sell anything faster.

Lol 1998? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849818)

Did everyone forget? You could buy a cd-rom drive for like $50 in 1998. Who the fuck still wanted a floppy drive?

Re:Lol 1998? (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850090)

Well, for one thing folks needed to be able to write to the media. Which means that you'd have to have a CDR in ever single computer you wanted to transfer data between. I remember buying my first CDRW about that time and having to pay over $200 for it.

And you'd end up having to shell out a lot for CDRs as CDRWs were never particularly reliable, in fact I think I've yet to have one which didn't lose all the data on it after a relatively short period of time.

Re:Lol 1998? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36850124)

Gee, I dunno dumbass... people who needed to SAVE stuff ? In 1998, a CD burner cost about $700, plus another $200 for the SCSI adapter. I know, I was the only guy in town with one, and business was gooooood!

I want my HD (1)

JustinKSU (517405) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849826)

I think we are a long way from widespread streaming of HD movies. Until then, I want my Blu-ray.

Yeah well (1)

Hsien-Ko (1090623) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849828)

Let me know when internet streaming gets a decent deinterlacer.

Re:Yeah well (1)

billcopc (196330) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850186)

Dude, you do realize nearly all digital video is progressive, right ? Or were you thinking of some fancy inter-frame interpolation gadget to turn 24fps film into 48fps, and 29.97 into 59.94 ?

Like Vanilla Ice? (4, Funny)

geoffrobinson (109879) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849852)

like Vanilla Ice was able to kill our brain like a poisonous mushroom?

Can we get any other good examples?

A Long Death (2)

Lance Dearnis (1184983) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849864)

No, I don't think so - not for a while. The Redbox model is highly productive. People still want the premium editions, still want the Blu-Rays. Not everyone has the bandwith needed for high quality streaming. People still prize the reliability and dependency of physical media, ESPECIALLY with how sometimes things just disappear from Netflix. If Netflix is killing DVDs (Which I'll admit is possible), I don't see DVDs dying for about a decade, at least, as the content models have to shift first - and those guys are notorious for suing the pants off of everyone, getting stupid laws passed to protect their industry, and have tons of money to fight with.

Re:A Long Death (2)

HikingStick (878216) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850006)

Redbox is doing things that I believe hurt its own model, though, too. Inventories have been split between Blue Ray and standard DVD (meaning fewer titles for either format). Now, with the addiiton of game titles, that further erodes the space available for a variety of titles. Of the last half-dozen times my wife and I have stopped at a Redbox location, we only rented once (though we intended to rent each time). We just couldn't find any titles that interested us in stock (the ones we wanted were already checked out).

Rural locations (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849878)

Until they get high speed internet out to rural locations, something better than 1.5Mbs cellular with 5GB caps on. DVDs will continue to be the best solution.

I can't get a cable company or phone company to run a decent line out the 1/2 mile from the major roadway for 10 houses so I can't see that happening any time soon.

Very different. (1)

archen (447353) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849886)

I'll believe netflix can kill DVDs off when they have their entire catalog available for streaming. As the services are going to split, I'm sure I'm not the only one thinking that the DVD through the mail option is looking like the better way to go.

Besides which if I decide to BUY a title (some of us do that too), then what are my options for the thousands of titles not available on Bluray? Are the media conglomerates suddenly handing out hi-def mkv files on flash drives that I'm not aware of?

Re:Very different. (1)

Desler (1608317) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849952)

I'll believe netflix can kill DVDs off when they have their entire catalog available for streaming.

And even that is extremely iffy. Netflix has little to no influence over the lifespan of DVDs. Now, if companies like Best Buy started phasing out DVDs for sale then you might see something.

This one is different (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849888)

Not everyone has access to unlimited high speed internet. I live just east of Phoenix but still well within the metropolitan area and the best I can do is 1.5 internet and right now I'm living on a Verizon mifi with a 5 gig cap. I can manage to download one movie a month if I watch no other videos and I'm conservative with my surfing. Yes I can up the cap. It roughly works out to $10 for each movie download just in bandwidth. Sorry but I'd rather have the physical DVD and I don't get to keep the Netflix ones so I get stuck with $10 movie rentals because of bandwidth. For a lot of the country dropping DVDs would be a disaster and it would adversely affect film revenues reducing the number of films made. It may happen no matter how adversely it affects everyone due to profits. I'd say the choice would be move to a city if you want to watch movies but I do live in a major city and I still can't get decent internet. This is seriously putting the cart before the horse. It's like forcing people to give up their horses for cars but most of the country doesn't have gas stations. To me it reeks of less service for more money so everyone should see this is a bad thing overall.

Horrible Instant Selection (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849900)

Anyone who uses Netflix streaming knows that the number of new/popular movies available instantly is vanishingly small

Is Netflix killing quality? (1)

Berkyjay (1225604) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849904)

No one seems to be mentioning the loss of picture quality with this move towards streaming.

Re:Is Netflix killing quality? (1)

TimHunter (174406) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850194)

It's likely that streaming video users don't care.

The loss in picture quality is similar to the loss of audio quality with the move from CDs to MP3s and to the loss of unmetered phone usage with the move from POTS to cellular phones.

New technologies don't have to be superior in every way to the technologies they supplant, just superior in the ways that people want.

MP3 listeners want the convenience of downloading small audio files more than they want high fidelity. Cellular phone users are willing to pay more for the convenience of cellular phone service. Streaming video users want convenience and are willing to give up video quality to get it.

What a crap summary (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849906)

Floppies didn't die off because of anything Apple did, they died off because cheap USB mass storage supplanted the floppy.


Haven't bought new DVDs in years (2)

Bob the Super Hamste (1152367) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849924)

In looking at how I consume media from Netflix I have basically been mostly a streaming customer since they have started expanding their selection. In the past year I have gotten 1 new DVD that I have gotten around to watching. I don't have cable and live in a low area so over the air digital TV is mostly out (I only get 2 channels now) so most of my "TV" is done streaming over the internet. My wife or I can watch most recent episodes of shows we like from Hulu, or directly from the networks, and for older shows and movies we can watch them off of Netflix. The $9 a month I pay is great for the all I can eat video buffet I currently enjoy, I don't even mind the commercials on the free Hulu or network sites since that is what you get when watching cable or over the air TV anyway. I would have had the internet connection I have anyway since I do push a lot of data in and out of my computer each month any way.

Bondi, not Blueberry (2)

tverbeek (457094) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849936)

For the record, the iMac that debuted without a floppy drive came in only one color: Bondi Blue. The Blueberry iMac was part of a later generation.

I agree (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36849942)

I totally agree. Currently, my DVD player is used solely by the DVDs I check out from Netflix. Once I cancel my DVD subscription next month, it will sit idle, collecting dust. I'm hoping Netflix will pick up more streaming options, but I've already started seeing the value in Amazon Video-on-demand to be my physical DVD replacement.

DVDs don't disappear from servers (1)

El Fantasmo (1057616) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849944)

I can ask Netflix to send me some old B&W film nobody watches any more and they will. There's no way for me to ask them to put it on a server for me. As already posted , streaming quality is poor compared to DVD and with ISP data caps looming, it won't be a good service for long.

DVD isn't the issue (1)

spinkham (56603) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849956)

If he's right, and in 6 months to year the streaming library covers more than the DVDs, that would be awesome, and nobody would complain.

I'm highly doubtful, as I've already watched many of my favorite things that were available for streaming get knocked off the service.

PC Games Killed the Floppy (2)

chronosan (1109639) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849960)

But I don't think they can be blamed for DVD's demise. PC Games almost went from CD distribution direct to digital, very few years on DVD.

Someone has to... (1)

Baloroth (2370816) | more than 3 years ago | (#36849966)

Let me just say it and just get it out of the way:

The DVD is dead. RIP.

Dell killed the floppy... (1)

madhatter256 (443326) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850012)

When dell stopped manufacturing PCs without the ability to have a built-in floppy via a FDD port on the main board, it essentially put the final nail in the floppy coffin.

Front page material? (1)

fordfanboi (1628515) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850036)

I'm surprised this is a top story. The two aren't similar at all as has already been established.

intent of the industry (1)

frovingslosh (582462) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850064)

The whole Netflix pricing thing was driven, at least in large part, by the industry increasing prices. I don't think it is completely unlikely that the industry (or the MPAA mafia if you prefer) P>

Of course I'm talking about the same people who at first fought technology like the video tape, but now see a very significant share of their revenue come from DVD and Blu-Ray sales. While many wouldn't give them the credit to be smart enough to deliberately take action that might help phase out the DVD, I'm sure that they like the idea of people paying for a movie each time they want to see it rather than owning an inexpensive copy of their own. And, of course, if they can convert the industry and the public perception to a pay per view or subscription model then it becomes all that easier to phase out the media and just rake in the income on rental of very low quality DRM encumbered digital copies. And, of course, at that point prices can start climbing again, as the alternatives no longer exist.

The best thing that could come out of the NetFlix change in pricing would be if a significant number of sheep told NetFlix "Fine, drop my subscription in price by two bucks and only send mr DVDs by mail, I'll pass on the low bitrate, limited selection, no extras downloads".. However, with the immidate gratification mindset that America has, I don't see that likely to happen. So the MPAA will likely drive us to a download crappy quality one-time rental model, even while AT&T and their like move to a pay by the megabyte pricing model.

Apple did not kill floppies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36850074) was just the first to notice that they were dead.

At the time the transparent Macs arrived... (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850086)

I was working at a big-name electronics store. I had a 100MB removable cartridge drive and that is about the same time that Superdrives -- 100MB drives that were backwards-compatible with 3.5" floppies -- became widely available.

Just as so many others here have said: Apple didn't kill the floppy drive. They may have been one of the earliest companies to recognize that the floppy was already dead, but that's not the same thing.

Missing DVD Benefits. (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36850108)

This is something that could be fixed, but several problems with streaming as it currently stands are:
(1) the lack of options for watching films in other languages,
(2) frequent lack of sub-titling options,
(3) lack of behind-the-scenes/deleted scenes/bloopers and other kinds of extras that all come with DVDs.
(4) As others have mentioned, the loss of picture fidelity and audio quality/surround is a big deal. Maybe not if you're watching it on your iPhone, but very true for any respectible television/monitor.
(5) I'll include dis-honorable mention of broadband ISPs with stingy bandwidth caps in this list too. It's not like you could watch handful of movies and shows every week under a lot of these plans with caps.

I don't think Netflix is going to kill the DVD.

Without DVDs, you'll never own a movie. (1)

Animats (122034) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850136)

If it's in the "cloud", in time, it will go away. Most "streaming" services seem to have a life of about five years. Size doesn't matter; WalMart Music and Microsoft PlaysForSure both went away. Zune may be going away, too.

And if it's in the "cloud", cable companies can slowly cut off your air supply with bandwidth caps, forcing you to watch their "premium" services.

They're making the same flawed assumption as Apple (2)

jaskelling (1927116) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850178)

They're assuming that everyone has cheap, reliable, easily available broadband. Whether it be for movies, operating system downloads, or just everyday use, this is a patently false assumption. When the floppy was killed, DVD/CD media was an immediately available replacement for many, if not all users simply by visiting their local store. In this case, users are at the behest of other companies who do not have a financial incentive to provide service to many areas - let alone ensure reliability or access. This is before we even mention the picture & sound quality or the constant "rebuffering" waits. Yes, all you lovely people who loudly proclaim the death of physical media for downloading - many of us envy your ability to make that change. And before someone says "Well move to somewhere that it's available", I live in a major metropolitan area, top 25 DMA. The internet service sucks due to poor infrastructure, regardless of who you subscribe to. And let's not forget bandwidth caps. Downloading/streaming only is not yet a viable permanent solution.

Slashdot Shill (1)

imunfair (877689) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850202)

It really feels like the Slashdot editors are shilling for Netflix lately - first a summary about how they "had" to raise prices, linking to an article without any data supporting that conclusion. Now an article about how it's "not so bad" - it's "progressive" and normal people just don't understand yet.

I think Netflix provides a good service, but less than a year ago they had a dollar or two price hike for the sole purpose of forcing people from 1DVD to streaming-only plans, when they were released. An honest company would have grandfathered in the pricing for old subscribers, and used the price difference to sell streaming-only to new customers. I see this recent price change as the exact same thing, a dishonest sales pitch to get people to switch accounts - not precipitated by rising costs or anything else. They want to make more profit and that's fine, but don't treat your customers like they're stupid.

They have a certain budget for streaming content and they rotate in and out content depending on what they feel will be popular - they can't stream everything at once because of cost, not because they can't get licenses for it. That alone makes it feel a bit devious forcing customers off plans like 1DVD+streaming where they can get any content in one way or another, to plans like streaming-only where they can only get preselected content that often doesn't include the big name titles since they're more expensive to license. (If you feel like watching a specific title and can find it on streaming you're lucky - if you just want a specific genre you can probably find something worth watching)

Apple fanboys are funny (2)

0123456 (636235) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850238)

Apple may have been among the first to stop supporting floppies, but only a fanboy would claim that removing them from Apple machines that made up a minute percentage of the desktop market somehow killed them. Floppies simply became obsolete, though I still had to find a floppy disk to install a BIOS upgrade on a new system as late as 2008.

how quickly forgotten ... maybe in the NEWS (1)

PJ6 (1151747) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850266)

... the outcry is significant and it is problematic, but it's also important to note how quickly these things are forgotten.

WRONG. Just because the media stops reporting on something after a week doesn't mean it's forgotten. The people who are pissed off remain pissed off a lot longer than that.

BIOS (1)

DarthVain (724186) | more than 3 years ago | (#36850288)

The only reason I put floppy drives in my PC builds back in the day was that most BIOS didn't seem to be able to reliably boot by other means. I had one floppy with master boot loader hanging out of my dell for years when linux didn't want to behave with my sketchy BIOS.

Now that everything can boot by CDROM or DVD easily, or even USB, there ceased to be a need for them. USB memory killed it a long time ago, and before that CD's got cheap enough not to care.

So one could point to any number of contributing reasons, none of which rhymed with napple.

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