After limiting access to "Super HD" content to subscribers of Cablevision (NYSE: CVC), Google Fiber (Nasdaq: GOOG) and other operators in its content delivery network, Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX) said Thursday that all subscribers can access its "highest quality HD streams."
Netflix began offering Super HD versions of TV shows and movies in its library in January. It has used Super HD to push ISPs to join its Open Connect network, and allow the company to place storage appliances near the networks of broadband providers.
"Based on the performance data we've seen, and in response to member requests, we are now expanding availability to give all our members the ability to enjoy Netflix in the best possible quality," Netflix director of corporate communications Joris Evers wrote in a blog post.
The move could see subscribers of Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA), Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC) and other ISPs that have resisted joining Open Connect watch more TV shows and movies on connected TVs and other devices running Netflix. But access to higher quality video from Netflix could also make it easier for some high-speed Internet customers to shave the number of premium cable networks in their subscriptions, and to reduce the amount of paid video-on-demand content they buy from operators.
Evers said Netflix is continuing to "encourage" other ISPs to join Open Connect. Netflix has been releasing monthly reports that track ISPs that have the fastest average delivery speeds for Netflix streams, which could help it motivate more providers to join Open Connect.
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