Netflix video game rental idea is axed

If you were waiting for the day when you could watch Family Guy on your iPad, pop Indiana Jones into your DVD player, and wait for the latest Call of Duty game to appear in your mailbox, all while only logging into one online account, your dreams have been quashed. Specifically, the Call of Duty part. Video streaming giant Netflix has dismissed its plans to add video game titles to its mail-order rental library.

The announcement came during this week's quarterly earnings conference call. The call had an ultimately positive vibe to it, as Netflix managed to gain back 600,000 of the 800,000 subscribers it lost in the previous quarter. The quarter in question was the first time the online company saw a dip in its user base.

The last time Netflix entertained the idea of adding video games to its mix was in October, when CEO Reed Hastings was quoted as saying there were still internal discussions about its viability. But the truth is Gamefly has a very strong stranglehold on that market, and there is already competition from Blockbuster Online, as well as Redbox kiosks. For streaming content, which is the direction Netflix is clearly heading, there's OnLive, and there's no way Netflix would invest in the resources necessary to compete in that nascent market. So for now, your remote lives with Netflix and your joystick lives with Gamefly. Those streams will not cross any time soon.

[via USA Today]