Spotify Plans To Get Into Streaming Video, Compete With Netflix And Amazon: Report

03/25/2013 05:00 pm ET
  • Alexis Kleinman Deputy Managing Editor Of Impact & Innovation, The Huffington Post

There may be too much competition in the streaming-music game for Spotify to hang on for a whole lot longer. So what's a company to do when the market is oversaturated? Enter into another oversaturated market, of course! In an effort to compete with popular streaming video services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and HBO Go, Spotify discussing to creating a streaming video service, according to a report from Business Insider's Nicholas Carlson.

According to Carlson's report, Spotify is planning to take a cue from Netflix and stream both existing television series and original ones after the success of Netflix's House of Cards. It remains unclear whether or not Spotify's video service will include movies. CEO Daniel Ek didn't shoot down the rumors point-blank, telling CNET in an interview on Monday: "I won't rule it out because we're a company that looks at what we're doing incredibly long term. But right now, we're all focused on music."

The question is: Can Spotify compete with these big streaming video companies? Sure, Spotify is a big company in its own right, but in a completely different sphere. Perhaps more importantly, Spotify's valuation doesn't approach Netflix's or Amazon's. Spotify, which isn't a publicly traded company, is worth around $3 billion, based on its latest round of funding. Meanwhile, Netflix is worth about $10 billion, and Amazon is worth a staggering $84 billion.

With billions more dollars, Netflix and Amazon are better positioned to fund high-brow, HBO-esque shows. It isn't cheap: one season of Netflix's political thriller "House of Cards," starring Kevin Spacey and directed by David Fincher, cost $100 million to make.

At this point, Netflix, Amazon and HBO are trusted names in video entertainment. Spotify may have to work harder to get viewers, especially for their original content. Many of the most popular shows also have exclusive deals with each site, so Spotify might also have a more difficult time locking down popular shows to stream. All leading to Spotify CEO Daniel Ek clarifying to CNET that while streaming video is a feature that Spotify is looking into, streaming video probably won't be coming anytime soon.

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