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Everything you need to know about Netflix live streaming

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The central theses

  • Netflix is ​​experimenting with live streaming with the goal of perfecting this new venture for future success.
  • The streaming giant has broadcast live events with mixed results and faced image quality issues and stream interruptions.
  • Netflix needs to improve its advertising efforts and the overall quality of its live streams to become a top contender in the live TV space.


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After more than 15 years of expanding its streaming library and selection of original productions, Netflix has begun experimenting with live streaming and evolving into a true broadcaster.

Netflix's live streaming events have shown mixed results, but the company's future may depend on perfecting its success – as it did in expanding its DVD delivery service into the gigantic streaming service we know today .


What is Netflix live streaming?

First launched in 2007, a decade after its founding as a DVD-by-mail subscription service, Netflix is ​​trusted by millions for its vast collection of original and acquired films and television shows. However, in an extremely competitive world of streaming platforms, Netflix must continually innovate to maintain its subscriber base. The latest idea has the potential to be the most successful yet – if Netflix can implement it.


Chris Rock Selective Outrage on Netflix
Nate Williams / MakeUseOf

Chris Rock: Selective outrage

The first test of Netflix's live streaming (which is really just a reinvention of something that already exists on cable) was Chris Rock's 2023 stand-up special Selective outrage. Since Netflix doesn't typically specialize in live events (just look at how shy it is about releasing its original films into proper theaters), it had to think like a live event planner to make a successful broadcast possible Chris Rock: Selective outrage.

That meant converting the Hippodrome Theater in Baltimore, Maryland, into a broadcast studio for one night only. Hundreds of seats in the theater were removed to make room for all the technical equipment, including over a dozen cameras, lots of lighting and lots of A/V equipment. Surprisingly, it went more or less smoothly.


From then on, Netflix continued to implement its live streaming technology wherever possible. While live broadcasts are commonplace on traditional network television, they are fundamentally unheard of in the streaming space. This is bound to come with some hiccups, and boy, were there any hiccups.

Every Netflix live streaming event so far

After broadcasting in March 2023 by Chris Rock: Selective outrageNetflix followed up with a planned live reunion of Love is blind Season four in April 2023. However, it failed to get the technology to work properly, leading to hours of delays before a pre-recorded special finally aired instead.

After this debacle, Netflix broadcast and launched its TUDUM 2023 fan event in June Baby animal camera And Baby Gorilla Cam later in autumn. With the golf tournament The Netflix Cup in November 2023, they ventured into live sport for the first time and secured the rights to weekly live broadcasts WWE Raw (Expected to start in January 2025).


In 2024, Netflix broadcast the 30th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards and Tennis Exhibition in February The Netflix slam in April, more Iive streaming sporting events are planned.

Netflix Cup live stream
Nate Williams / MakeUseOf

Is Netflix live streaming good? 3 things that should change

Netflix live streaming is good, but it has some serious issues that need to be addressed. Otherwise, this new service may never have the chance to reach its full potential. With just a few tweaks, it could become one of the best live sports streaming sites on the internet.

picture quality

First and foremost: image quality. While Netflix's uploads look good in retrospect, those who have watched a live Netflix event can attest to the stream's underwhelming picture quality. That's not enough for more high-profile events, especially when there aren't nearly as many problems in broadcasting.


Stream interruptions

Second, Netflix needs to change its streaming methods to prevent excessive interruptions. The catastrophe that was failure Love is blind The broadcast of the season four reunion was a real PR nightmare. If Netflix had thought Love is blind Fans were harsh on social media, try to anger the fight fans who tuned in to see Jake Paul vs. Mike Tyson.

Advertising

Finally, Netflix should seriously consider putting more money into proper advertising campaigns for its live events. Existing subscribers will receive alerts ahead of the latest shows, but what about those who don't have a Netflix account? Focus on engaging these people before the next big event (or re-engaging them once they've signed up) for even greater success.

Netflix Slam live stream
Nate Williams / MakeUseOf


Netflix live streaming needs work

As it stands, Netflix live streaming is a perfectly viable feature on a streamer with more gimmicks than you can count on two hands. However, it will take some serious work in a few different departments to be a serious competitor to traditional live television. Jake Paul vs. Mike Tyson will be the true test of whether Netflix will be considered one of the best live streaming platforms or just an expensive fad.

Given the sheer number of live streaming events that have taken place so far, there's no doubt that Netflix is ​​confident in its broadcasts so far – and, for the record, it should be. While there have been some hurdles, Netflix is ​​showing promise as it continues to roll out these live streams.