Netflix Expects 1M Fewer Subscribers

Shares slump on lowered projections
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 15, 2011 2:34 PM CDT
Netflix shares are down, as are projected subscription estimates.   (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma, file)

(Newser) – Netflix is taking its lumps today over its price hike and plan changes. After the company announced that it expects to have 1 million fewer US subscribers than projected at the end of the third quarter—24 million, instead of 25 million—its shares slid about 15%, reports MarketWatch. The big hit is in DVD-only customers: The company now expects to have 2.2 million of those, down from the projected 3 million. It also revised its projection for streaming-only customers down from 22 million to 21.8 million.

Considering that Netflix had 24.59 million US customers at the end of the second quarter, this means that the pricing changes will result in a net loss of customers of about 500,000, notes Tim Carmody at Wired. "Netflix may have been premature here," he adds. "It doesn’t own the streaming business, even in the US. Meanwhile, DVDs are hanging on much longer than anyone expected. Netflix had the right vision at the right time and built its tech at the right pace, but tossed its customers (and their wallets) into the deep end a little too soon."

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