Tuesday, January 4, 2011, 3:17 PM ET|Posted by Will RichmondThe mutual love affair between the consumer electronics industry and Netflix continues on, with today's announcement that 11 different CE companies will create a dedicated Netflix button on their remote controls for certain connected TVs, Blu-ray players and set-top boxes. The unusual move is the latest sign of how interdependent the success of CE companies' connected devices and Netflix's burgeoning popularity have become.
The love affair was born out of CE companies' recognition of the old adage that compelling content and applications are critical to inducing consumers to buy the next snazzy gadget. Case in point: Blu-ray disc player sales were stagnating until connectivity was added, enabling access to Netflix and other streaming content. As a result, in the first 9 months of 2010, around 2.4 million players were sold in the U.S., up 96% from the prior year's period, according to NPD Group.