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Netflix has stuck a deal with three of the smaller cable providers in the U.S. that will allow consumers to access the streaming network as if it is a regular cable ‘channel.’ It will be available as an app on the set-top TiVo devices subscribers use.
The streaming giant made deals with Atlantic Broadband, Grande Communications and RCN Telecom Services to bring the app to those companies’ subscribers, who will no longer have to use Apple TV or Roku to access Netflix. A spokesman for TiVo told Reuters that Netflix could be ready to make more deals with other providers that also use TiVo boxes.
Other companies that use TiVo boxes are Suddenlink, Mediacom, Cable One and Blue Ridge Communications.
“We're making Netflix a channel on our lineup and in our channel guides,” David Isenberg, chief marketing officer for Atlantic Broadband said in a statement, notes The Washington Post. “If you're an RCN customer, perhaps in the D.C. area you would pick up your remote control, you would tune to Channel 450, and there you'd find Netflix. You'd select it and that'll launch the Netflix app. Literally, watching Netflix is as easy as changing the channel.”
Terms of the deal were not revealed. However, a Netflix rep did say that Netflix is not going to be provided with any kind of Internet ‘fast lane’ dedicated to Netflix traffic.
Subscribers to the three cable companies will need TiVo DVR and Netflix subscriptions to access the content. The Post notes that Netflix already has similar deals with TV providers in the U.K., Sweden and Denmark, but this is the first time it has struck such a deal in the U.S.