Netflix announces that they will be shutting down their DVD by mail business later this year after 25 years.
Say goodbye to those little red envelopes. Netflix announced today that they will be shutting down their original DVD-by-mail business later this year. It’s an end of an era, folks.
“After an incredible 25 year run, we’ve decided to wind down DVD.com later this year,“Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos said in a statement. “Our goal has always been to provide the best service for our members but as the business continues to shrink that’s going to become increasingly difficult. So we want to go out on a high, and will be shipping our final discs on September 29, 2023.” Before Netflix began streaming movies and TV shows, their service delivered DVDs to customers, who would mail them back in those red envelopes when they were done. Blockbuster was still king of the DVD rental market at the time, but the iconic company would soon feel the power of Netflix and ultimately shut down.
Ted Sarandos added: “Those iconic red envelopes changed the way people watched shows and movies at home — and they paved the way for the shift to streaming. From the beginning, our members loved the choice and control that direct-to-consumer entertainment offered: the wide variety of the titles and the ability to binge watch entire series. DVDs also led to our first foray into original programming — with Red Envelope Entertainment titles including Sherrybaby and Zach Galifianakis Live at the Purple Onion.” Sarandos added that the company feels “so privileged to have been able to share movie nights with our DVD members for so long, so proud of what our employees achieved and excited to continue pleasing entertainment fans for many more decades to come. To everyone who ever added a DVD to their queue or waited by the mailbox for a red envelope to arrive: thank you.“
According to Netflix, the very first DVD they ever shipped out was a copy of beetle juice on March 10, 1998. Back then, it would have been difficult to imagine that rental stores would go the way of the dodo and streaming services would rule the market. Subscribers still have a few more months before Netflix officially shuts down their DVD-by-mail service, so get your fix while you can.