It might seem counter-intuitive, but Netflix will probably get a boost from the viewership of live sports — at least in Latin America. That’s because, in preparation for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, a large number of consumers in the region upgraded their TVs to Internet-connected sets that can access its on-demand streaming service.
Today in its second-quarter earnings letter, Netflix pointed to improved growth from a number of different new connected devices. That includes set-top boxes from Virgin Media in the U.K., as well as the availability of Netflix on TiVo boxes from Suddenlink, RCN, Grande, and Atlantic Broadband.
It also highlighted its upcoming availability on Android TV connected devices from the likes of Sony, Sharp, and others.
One of the side benefits from being on pretty much every connected TV platform is that, when someone upgrades their TV set, it will be instantly available. That appears to be the case in Latin America, where Netflix is seeing more viewers accessing its service from their new TVs than in any other market.
From the letter:
Post World Cup, the number of Smart TVs used for Netflix viewing in Latin American countries is at a new high; in fact, the percentage of viewing from Smart TVs in Latin America is higher than any other region we serve. Members accessing Netflix on a big screen generally watch more and retain better than members using smaller devices.
While Netflix usually sees some decline in viewership during major sporting events like the Olympics or the World Cup, it stands to benefit from the number of consumers who will have direct access to its service on brand new TV sets. Thanks to the month-long tournament, it’s got a lot of potential new subscribers that could sign up now that their days aren’t filled with futbol.
After all, they’ve gotta watch something on those pretty new TVs, right?