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No more DVDs

Netflix mails out last DVDs, concluding the business that started it all

Netflix began as an online DVD rental company.

Netflix is ending the business practice that started it all. This Friday, Netflix has mailed out its last round of DVDs, allowing renters to keep the discs. Earlier this morning, Netflix published a blog sharing some of their history and the fact that they were concluding the business that first got them on the map.

“In 1998, we delivered our first DVD. This morning, we shipped our last,” begins the post. Netflix calls the moment “the end of an era,” yet one that allowed them to build a foundation that resulted in the company that is now one of the biggest makers of films and TV. “Today, we wanted to take the opportunity to thank you for watching.”

The blog post features some interesting statistics and a timeline, filled with fun facts, like “Beetlejuice” was the first disc the company ever shipped, and that by 2019, Netflix had shipped over 5 billion discs. “Thank you for loving our red envelopes, sharing countless movie nights with us at home and being part of our final season,” concludes the post.

Netflix’s DVD service changed the way we watched TV

Netflix’s DVD-by-mail service set the stage for the streaming era. The business model ended Blockbuster’s dominion on DVD rentals, and thus the end of all movie rentals. According to CBS News, longtime Netflix by mail users were able to keep their last batch of rentals, with some loyal costumers getting as much as 10 discs as a going away present. "It's sad," said Amanda Konkle, a Netflix DVD subscriber. “It's makes me feel nostalgic. Getting these DVDs has been part of my routine for decades."

Konkle revealed she’d watched over 900 films with Netflix, and used her last deliveries to stock up on Marlon Brando titles that are difficult to find streaming.

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