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Netflix launches in Germany (in English too)

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Netflix launches in Germany (in English too)
Some of the cast of Orange is the New Black at a photocall in Mexico. Photo: DPA
12:14 CEST+02:00
UPDATE: TV streaming service Netflix opened its virtual doors in Germany on Tuesday in the face of stiff competition from existing players. Users will be able to watch hit shows and movies in English on the German service.

Users with an existing account from another country will be able to access German as well as their country's content, a Netflix spokeswoman told The Local.

Those who subscribe to Netflix in Germany can choose to watch shows in a German-dubbed version as well as in the original language with subtitles, meaning English speakers can watch hit shows such House of Cards in English.

"We are proud to bring the future of television to Germany," said Reed Hastings, co-founder and CEO of Netflix. 

Netflix members will be able to see shows not broadcast in Germany before such as Orange is the New Black and Bojack Horseman.

German members can also watch the first two seasons of House of Cards and the fourth and final series of The Killing.

Earlier seasons of US shows will also be available, including Breaking Bad, Pretty Little Liars and the British show Sherlock. 

The company has developed partnerships with Deutsche Telekom and Vodafone in an effort to recruit more customers quickly to compete with already-established services.

iPhone, Android and Windows Phone apps for the service have been available for download since Friday.

Prices on Netflix Germany's homepage are displayed at €7.99 for a monthly subscription.

Netflix will launch into a busy German market which already boasts four large subscription TV competitors in Maxdome, Watchever, Amazon Prime Instant and Sky Snap.

The current players have similar price offerings (ranging from €6.99 to €8.99 per month) and viewers' favourite content is scattered across all four rather than concentrated at one provider.

A recent comparison of the services by Spiegel found that few had large numbers of blockbuster films available for streaming under their flat-rate package, and there was little availability of recent German films.

Series fans are better provided for, but still have to choose carefully among the existing services depending on their particular passions. As a subsidiary of ProSiebenSat.1, Maxdome has access to much of the most popular German TV programming.

Netflix has sought to attract customers by commissioning original series, such as House of Cards and Orange is the New Black, which industry commentators expect to be a big attraction of the service in Germany.

And all the services allow viewers to watch from almost any device except for Sky Snap, which is largely limited to the browser, Samsung televisions and Apple mobile devices.

A particular advantage over Netflix at German providers was the option to download episodes or films to view when away from a reliable internet connection.

Around 50 million people already use Netflix around the world.

SEE ALSO: Netflix to launch in Germany in September

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