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Netflix rules out Kiwi launch

Broadband is crap, can't get the rights

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Netflix has rejected New Zealand as a potential international launch spot because of low internet data caps and content rights issues.

Attending the ITEX business tech summit in Auckland, New Zealand, Netflix VP of product innovation Brent Ayrey told local media that Netflix had no intention of launching in New Zealand.

Ayrey said that by next year the average US Netflix customer would need a data cap of one terabyte a month, adding that New Zealand ISPs do not currently offer those kinds of data caps.

"Generally when we look at potential markets, metered broadband is a deterrent,” expat Kiwi Ayrey said.

New Zealand's broadband infrastructure was also an issue for Netflix and he raised concerns about its capacity to handle Netflix traffic, which currently accounts for 33 percent of all downstream internet traffic in the US.

“The way we think about our international opportunities is that it’s a little bit tactical in terms of the content we can access, and then it’s about broadband connectivity.

"It's really a function of do people watch TV? Do we have the content? Does the internet infrastructure work? The answer for at least the last question for New Zealanders is no."

In June Netflix founder Reed Hastings said that the Asia Pacific would be a very important zone in its international expansion plans. Since then speculation about where and when the video streamer would emerge has waxed and waned with its share price.

Netflix has opened in Canada and Latin American and last week raised $US400m in fresh capital ahead of launching into the UK market in 2012.

"Over the next couple of years we have to go country by country by country by country around the globe," Hastings said earlier in the year. ®

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