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Netflix surprised by popularity of downloading its content

Ted Sarandos admits SVoD has been relying on WiFi and broadband to become ubiquitous

Netflix boss Ted Sarandos has said the SVoD platform has been left surprised by the popularity of downloading its content among its subscribers.

Sarandos admitted the company had been expecting broadband and WiFi to become more prevalent, particularly on planes.

“We really dismissed downloading for a long period of time because it represented a very small percentage of the total population,” Sarandos said.

Instead, Netflix has found that younger subs, commuters whose wireless access is patchy, and subcribers in Latin America and parts of Asia prefer downloading content to view offline.

Netflix is planning to incorporate downloads in a series of kids-based (and some adult) “choose-your-own-adventure” programing accessed on portable devices.

“It actually was a development that we dismissed for a long time that really has made a better product across a ton of demographics,” Sarandos said.