Netflix Chief Executive Reed Hastings explained his company’s controversial deal with Comcast to buy improved transmission quality as one in which his streaming business had no choice, reports Deadline.com.
“The basic thing is we have no power” over Comcast, Hastings said at the Code Conference in California. That was why, even though Netflix signed the deal, the company didn’t like it and complained about it a few weeks later, the story adds.
“We asked them for access [to their mutual Internet-using customers], and couldn’t get it. You might say, ‘Why did you compromise on the deal,’ and we would say, ‘We had to,’” Hastings said.
He added, “The argument on their side is we should be able to charge anybody anything. But the problem is they’re a near monopoly. They want the whole Internet to pay them when their Internet customers want to use the Internet.”
Hastings predicted that the problem will grow worse as the cable industry continues to consolidate.
“Cable is going to be the entire U.S. residential Internet over the next 20 years,” Hastings said. “The fear [I have] is somewhat for Netflix but it’s mostly for the whole Internet. That’s why we’re talking about strong net neutrality, no blocking, settlement free, no slow lane. We’re raising the question, what happens when one company has that kind of control? It’s fundamentally, should Comcast be able to charge everybody else for access to their consumers?”