Netflix recently announced plans to divorce its DVD business from its streaming web video service and rebrand it Qwikster -- a plan that turned out to be short-lived.Netflix
Netflix has come a long way from its DVD-by-mail roots.AP
LOS GATOS, Calif. – Netflix has abandoned its unpopular plan to spin off its DVD-by-mail service and rename it Qwikster, saying it will continue to offer both services through its flagship web site.
The movie renter told customers in an email and blog post on Monday that they will continue using "one web site, one account and one password" under the Netflix brand for both streaming and DVD-by-mail services.
"It is clear that for many of our members two websites would make things more difficult, so we are going to keep Netflix as one place to go for streaming and DVDs," wrote CEO Reed Hastings on the company blog.
"This means no change ... In other words, no Qwikster," Hastings wrote.
The decision comes just three weeks after the company initially revealed plans to separate its DVD service and operate the brand under Qwikster.com. It had intended to use Netflix.com for its streaming-only service, forcing dual-service customers to use two separate accounts.
That decision proved to be just the latest among a series of missteps for the Los Gates, Calif.-based company, which has seen its share price drop 60 percent since July when Netflix announced a price increase for subscribers using both streaming and mailed DVD services. Previously, Netflix users had been able to pay one lower price for the combined service.
"Consumers value the simplicity Netflix has always offered and we respect that," said Netflix co-founder and CEO Reed Hastings. "There is a difference between moving quickly -- which Netflix has done very well for years -- and moving too fast, which is what we did in this case."
The company has faced a slew of cancellations since the summer, forcing it to cut its third-quarter guidance by one million subscribers last month. It is now expecting to have just 24 million subscribers at the end of the quarter.