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Has Netflix peaked? Subscriber target miss suggests HBO Now impact

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Streaming giant Netflix is reeling after its quarterly earnings report revealed lower than expected subscriber growth in its US homeland.

Stocks initially fell 10 per cent on Wednesday (via VentureBeat) after the firm announced it had acquired 880,000 new customers during the last three months, significantly lower than the expected 1.15 million newcomers.

The announcement follows the launch of rival standalone streaming services HBO Now and Showtime, which have given cord-cutters another means of spending their monthly TV budget.

It remains to be seen whether the arrival of cable’s big guns on Netflix’s turf has had much of an impact.

HBO and Showtime are yet to announce subscriber numbers for their fledgling platforms, although the former is estimated to have netted up to 2 million members since it launched in April.

All in all Netflix profits revenue falling to $74m compared to $110m for the same three months of last year, but that can be attributed to the company's huge investment in original content.

However, there was better news for Netflix with the addition of 2.74m international subscribers, which brought it above its target for the period. The company now has almost 70 million world wide subscribers and expects to hit 74 million by the end of 2015.

See also: Netflix vs Amazon Prime Instant Video

The company announced earlier this month that subscribers to its standard tier in the US, Canada and Latin America will be subjected to a $1 per month subscription increase.

Netflix says that cash will go to pay for the retention and addition of top content, as demanded by subscribers.

Whether the price hike will affect subscriber numbers heading into 2016 also remains to be seen.

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