The Cable Show 2014: Fries—Netflix Exposed ‘Functionality Gap’

Los Angeles – Cable industry execs here generally dismissed that the rise of Netflix exposed a failure of the cable industry, but one acknowledged that the streaming giant has at least taught the industry a valuable lesson.

Netflix “exposed that we have a massive functionality gap,” Mike Fries, Liberty Global’s president and CEO, said here at The Cable Show during the tech-focused portion of Tuesday’s general opening session.

Netflix, he said, showed the world that there’s a  simpler, cooler way to find and navigate content and to receive video recommendations, noting earlier that online video and its rate of consumption “has impacted every aspect of our business.”

The cable industry, he added, has begun to bridge the gap with products like Comcast’s X1 and Liberty Global’s own product, Horizon -- both next-gen video platforms that feature fancy new interfaces and the ability to reach not just TVs and set-top boxes, but mobile devices as well.

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