Well, that was qwik. Netflix announced this morning that it is abandoning its new plan to split its DVD-by-mail service into a new company named Qwikster. Apparently the company was unaware (!) that some people are interested in both rental DVDs and streaming, and weren’t crazy about the idea of having to do each in a totally separate environment (different accounts, different passwords, separate bills). Qwikster was announced Sept. 18; it is now going the way of New Coke. (Anyone else remember New Coke? Did I just suddenly make myself seem very old? I was, um, two when it happened.) Netflix’s recent price hike, from $16/month from $10 for those who both stream and rent DVDs, will remain in place.
“We underestimated the appeal of the single Web site and a single service,” Steve Swasey, a Netflix spokesman, said in a telephone interview. He quickly added: “We greatly underestimated it.”(New York Times)