Netflix adds Suddenlink to Open Connect CDN

Suddenlink Communications has joined the Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX) Open Connect content delivery network (CDN), which will allow it to deliver "super HD" movies and 3D content to its cable subscribers, Netflix spokesman Joris Elders told FierceCable Monday.

Netflix January ISP ranking

U.S. ISP rankings for January. (Source: Netflix)

The move helped Suddenlink move up five places in Netflix's monthly rankings of the fastest major ISPs. The seventh largest U.S. cable MSO, which owns systems in Texas, West Virginia, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana, was ranked third in January, averaging 2.08 Mbps for Netflix streams, according to Netflix. Cablevision, which also recently joined Open Connect, was ranked second, averaging 2.24 Mbps download speeds for Netflix streams. Cablevision (NYSE: CVC) was ranked in fifth place in the December rankings.

Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG) nascent Google Fiber service in Kansas City was ranked first in January, averaging 3.08 Mbps. Netflix's January rankings also included Verizon (NYSE: VZ) FiOS (2.04 Mbps); Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA)  (2.01); Mediacom (2.0); Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC)  (1.99); Cox Communications (1.96); Bright House (1.90) ; AT&T (NYSE: T) U-verse (1.83); CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL) (1.64); Windstream (1.56); Frontier Communications (Nasdaq: FTR)  (1.48); AT&T DSL (1.37); Verizon DSL (1.32); and Clearwire (Nasdaq: CLWR)  (1.22).

The speeds listed in the Netflix rankings are much lower than the broadband speeds marketed by the providers. Netflix said several factors can reduce the speeds, including home Wi-Fi networks, the types of devices Netflix subscribers use to view content, and the encoding schemes used to deliver TV shows and movies.

Netflix doesn't charge ISPs fees to join Open Connect, a program in which it places storage appliances near their networks that allow ISPs to deliver "super HD" and 3D content. Time Warner Cable complained last month that Netflix wasn't allowing ISPs that aren't Open Connect partners to receive the enhanced content.

Cablevision is using its improvement in the monthly Netflix ISP rankings to market its Optimum cable modem service. "We have a direct connection with the online video provider that ensures superior viewing and more extensive content than any of our competitors can deliver," Cablevision SVP Gemma Toner said in a prepared statement Monday.

Elder said that several other ISPs have joined Open Connect, but that Netflix doesn't publish the list of companies that are part of is content delivery network.

For more:
- see the Cablevision release
- and this Netflix blog post

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Cablevision partners with Netflix to deliver 'super HD' movies and 3D TV shows
Comcast won't offer Netflix to Xfinity TV subscribers
Verizon, Comcast, Charter top Netflix rankings of fastest ISPs