Netflix goes to Singapore, Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan early 2016

It actually didn't take weeks for Netflix to officially announce its rumored expansion in Asia. The world's largest Internet video streaming service has revealed that it is indeed coming to more countries early next year, particularly in South Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. Leaving out details of its potential partnership with local carriers, as well as pricing, Netflix's announcement is practically a battle cry and a challenge to rivals that are also trying to make it big in other markets outside of main ones like the US or UK.

It has just been a week since Netflix actually launched in Japan where it did something unusual. It partnered with local carrier Softbank, a move considered by some to be quite smart and something some news outlets are predicting will also hoppen in these four new Asian markets. Like Japan, these four are characterized by fast speed Internet connections and heavy mobile device usage, a perfect combination for Netflix. It makes business sense, then, for the service to team up with carriers to have its app preloaded on devices.

Netflix is, perhaps intentionally, being vague about the specifics of these new local services. There are no named special features yet, even special local content available to would be subscribers. All it reveals are pretty much the basic services and features available on any Netflix subscripition, like being able to watch anywhere on any device, in regular, HD or even UHD resolutions, and being able to seamlessly switch between devices without missing a beat. We'll probably hear more about the details in the months ahead, though Netflix's formal announcement might have been hastened by the earlier leak.

Netflix's expansion is a clear sign of intensified competition with rivals like Amazon for the top spot in the video streaming market. Just a week before Netflix launched in Japan, Amazon announced the availability of Prime Videos in the same country. Given this new announcement, Amazon could also counter with a similar expansion, especially since an early 2016 launch for Netflix gives Amazon a large window of time.