Qwikster Disappears Like the Bad Dream It Was

Illustration for article titled Qwikster Disappears Like the Bad Dream It Was

Oh, goodness, remember that time that Netflix cut itself in half like in Superman III, birthing the ill-conceived, foul-mouthed-stoner-Twitter-handled DVD-only Qwikster? Well, Qwikster is dead, according to Netflix CEO Reed Hastings. Long live Netflix.


The backtrack is a welcome—and as abrupt and surprising as its antecedent—move for the streaming company, which acknowledged in a blog post today that Qwikster was ill-fated from the start:

It is clear that for many of our members two websites would make things more difficult, so we are going to keep Netflix as one place to go for streaming and DVDs.

This means no change: one website, one account, one password… in other words, no Qwikster.

While the July price change was necessary, we are now done with price changes.

Does this means Hastings suddenly sees a future in DVDs where perhaps there wasn't one just a few weeks ago? Not likely! It was Netflix shareholders that put a gun to Qwikster's head on the day it was announced, and a precipitous loss of market share that pulled the trigger.

Which might actually turn out to be a shame: Qwikster's introduction was awkward and hasty and sounded like a chocolate milk-inspired superhero, but keeping DVDs at an arm's length may have actually been the best thing for a company that wants to thrive not just today but ten and twenty years from now. You know, when DVDs are interred next to 8-Tracks in the format graveyard.

For now, though: Qwikster, we hardly knew ye. Actually, we didn't know ye at all; we cut our DVD plan a year ago and haven't looked back. [Netflix]


Platypus Man

While I'm not a Netflix disc customer and I do see how the whole Qwikster thing would hurt consumer, this seems odd. It really makes sense from Netflix's point of view to do this in order to, as I think was explained here, not let the dying disc business take the streaming business down with it. I guess the press it got was so mind-bogglingly bad that they had to undo that.