Netflix Issues Patent On Subscription Rental Service

Jul 11, 2003

Netflix, an online subscription rental service, has announced that the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office issued to Netflix U.S. Pat. No. 6584450 that covers the company's subscription rental service and several extensions. While Netflix believes their main strength is in customer service, experts expect that the company will have to allocate resources to handling lawsuits as well. Launched in 1998, Netflix is an online movie rental service, providing more than one million subscribers with access to a library of more than 15,000 DVD titles. For $19.95 a month, Netflix subscribers can rent as many DVDs as they want, with three movies out at a time, and keep them for as long as they like. There are no due dates and no late fees. DVDs are delivered to the subscriber's address by first-class mail from shipping centers throughout the United States. The company also provides background information on DVD releases, including critic reviews, member reviews and ratings, and personalized movie recommendations.