We all suspected it and it has been written all over the interwebs, but now we can confirm it thanks to a report from the WSJ, which states that Netflix has indeed signed a multiyear agreement with Comcast to allow direct streaming to their users. The sum of money being paid to Comcast has not been disclosed, and Comcast, expectedly, has refused to comment on the sum in question.
The agreement was first stumbled upon by Bryan Berg, when he discovered a more direct route between his provider, Comcast, and his Netflix service. A few days later and it has been confirmed by the WSJ, and not only them, but Comcast has also made the announcement official on their site. Said Comcast, “the companies have established a more direct connection between Netflix and Comcast, similar to other networks. Netflix receives no preferential network treatment under the multi-year agreement, terms of which are not being disclosed.” In their statement, Comcast has not mentioned the financial details of the agreement, but we are sure that the sum was enough to make them change their stance regarding Netflix’s access to bandwidth on their network.
This may be the beginning of a horrid and strenuous relationship between ISPs and companies that provide streaming content on the internet. What’s to stop Verizon and TWC from seeking and striking similar deals with Netflix in the future? What’s to stop them from doing so with YouTube and Hulu as well? Herein lies the problem with the recent ruling against the FCC and, in fact, against net neutrality.
With Comcast’s impending take over of TWC, we all sit and wait with bated breaths, hoping that the deal does not get the approval it needs. In the mean time, we’re all trying to get into contact with Google, and we’re asking, “where do I sign up for Fiber?”