Netflix, Verizon Reach Streaming Deal

Netflix and telecom giant Verizon Communications have reached an agreement to provide improved video streaming ?to the latter's customers, a spokesman confirmed Tuesday.  

The deal is believed to replicate a February arrangement that Netflix, led by CEO Reed Hastings, struck with Comcast (in 2012, Verizon was also set to launch a similar streaming service with Netflix rival Redbox). It will provide a direct connection from the online video service to Verizon broadband customers.

CNET on Monday night quoted a Netflix representative discussing the so-called interconnect arrangement with Verizon that the streaming firm hopes will improve streaming performance in the future. 

Netflix, an advocate for "strong" net neutrality, has been a vocal opponent of the $45 billion merger between Time Warner Cable and Comcast, both of which reported first-quarter earnings earlier this month that exceeded expectations.  

“Comcast is already dominant enough to be able to capture unprecedented fees from transit providers and services such as Netflix,” Hastings and Netflix CFO David Wells wrote in their Q1 2014 letter to shareholders. “The combined company would possess even more anticompetitive leverage to charge arbitrary interconnection tolls for access to their customers. For this reason, Netflix opposes this merger."

Financial terms of the Netflix-Verizon deal were not disclosed.

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