Flip to the Netflix channel: streaming service comes to cable Monday

Netflix goes from grabbing cable viewers to getting its own TV channel

Netflix has eaten a sizable chunk of traditional TV cable television viewership, and soon it will invade the space with its own channel.

Netflix announced it inked a deal with RCN, Grande Communications and Atlantic Broadband that will integrate its internet streaming app directly into certain set-top boxes.

Starting April 28, customers of the three cable companies who also have a Netflix subscription will be to access streaming on a Tivo cable box. The added functionality will give cable subscribers the ability to watch movies and TV shows from the box just as they would be able to access Netflix on their PCs, tablets and phones.

The Tivo connection

The program requires users to have a cable-provided TiVo box. Although TiVos bought at retail come with a built-in Netflix app, the same functionality has been stripped out of cable sets.

Thanks to deals Netflix has negotiated with its content partners, switching to House of Cards is now as simple as switching the channel and it doesn't require launching a separate app.

The ripple effect

For now this is but a small win for Netflix. According to Variety, RCN counts a viewership of about 333,000, while Atlantic Broadband has 230,000 customers and Grande serves around 140,000 users.

While these cable operators might be comparatively small fish to big names such as Time Warner Cable and Comcast, it's a first for Netflix subscribers to watch their streaming video service as though it were an ordinary cable channel.

As Netflix continues to bulk up its own stock of original series, we could see the service become its own channel similar to FX and HBO.

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Via The Washington Post

Kevin Lee

Kevin Lee was a former computing reporter at TechRadar. Kevin is now the SEO Updates Editor at IGN based in New York. He handles all of the best of tech buying guides while also dipping his hand in the entertainment and games evergreen content. Kevin has over eight years of experience in the tech and games publications with previous bylines at Polygon, PC World, and more. Outside of work, Kevin is major movie buff of cult and bad films. He also regularly plays flight & space sim and racing games. IRL he's a fan of archery, axe throwing, and board games.