Rupert Murdoch appeared on the WSJ.D conference earlier this week, with a host of other guests from the technology and business world.
One of the biggest things Murdoch said was the need for a Netflix competitor. He said media giants should work together to create this competitor, to stop Netflix from growing to the point where it has more influence than cable networks.
Cable networks are already feeling the sting of Netflix, with around 40 million subscribers, it has already surpassed one of the most popular paid cable TV broadcasters, HBO, in monthly subscribers.
Hulu Plus has been the streaming service most programmers backed, until it started to fail against Netflix. Comcast, Fox and Disney all had 33 percent share in the streaming provider, but have been actively looking for a buyer for months.
Rupert Murdoch might claim the cable industry needs a Netflix competitor, but to compete against Netflix they need a service which actually provides quality content, not washed up shows from the three companies.
In order to do that, the cable industry needs to cannibalize their own market. They need to give subscribers the option of either cable TV or Internet TV; similar to what HBO are willing to do with the new streaming service coming in 2015.
This might hurt the company in the short term, but imagine all of the great content coming on cable TV, on the Internet. The only problem would be making the Internet customers pay the same amount as regular cable TV buyers.
Al-a-carte systems might be put in place on cable in the new few years, lowering the price for customers – this might open more cable companies to Internet TV, but right now, it would hurt their own market too much to create a genuine competitor to Netflix.