If you didn’t spend Valentine’s weekend binge watching the entire second season of House of Cards, then chances are that you either don’t watch Internet TV or have decided to take your time watching watching all 13 new episodes. President Obama himself decided to take the later option, and posted a message to his twitter account, asking that no one post spoilers.
The success of House of Cards is an example of how Internet could eventually replace digital cable television as the dominant form of home entertainment. The first season debuted last year as a British remake and cost Netflix $100 million to produce. It was an instant success, and the second season is just as popular, capturing viewers worldwide.
Although it doesn’t have Chinese subtitles, the series surprisingly made it past the censors in China. News reports say that Wang Qishan, a high level communist in charge of censorship is a fan of the series.
Netflix , CEO Reed Hastings told investors
You want to think of House of Cards as a down payment on the potential to build real franchises
Netflix has 44 million subscribers worldwide, and in the last quarter of 2013, viewers watched more than 2 billion hours of streaming entertainment.
The switch to streaming digital media is so strong that market changes are likely on the way. That is, at some point in the near future a majority of consumers will abandon discs to the point where producers stop making discs or substantially increase the price for physical medium. Pirated media, common in Costa Rica lacks the HD quality that most consumers in the developed world with a large screen TV or high resolution tablet device want to see.
Internet TV is a good deal cheaper than digital cable, and includes much of the same programming. Netflix is just $8 per month and works directly with modern televisions and some blue ray players. Best of all, as an original series, House of Cards is not subject to any regional restrictions. So, you can watch it in Costa Rica without the need for a Internet Proxy. However, much of the programming on Netflix and everything on Amazon Prime requires acces through an IP address in the United States.