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Netflix plans to go global

Reed Hastings, Founder and CEO of Netflix, participates in a panel discussion about entertainment in the digital age at the Motion Picture Association of America's conference "The Business of Show Business" in Washington on February 6, 2007. (UPI Photo/Alexis C. Glenn) | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/45f45eb7bb7f62ebce492543c3e18266/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
Reed Hastings, Founder and CEO of Netflix, participates in a panel discussion about entertainment in the digital age at the Motion Picture Association of America's conference "The Business of Show Business" in Washington on February 6, 2007. (UPI Photo/Alexis C. Glenn) | License Photo

LAS VEGAS, Jan. 8 (UPI) -- In Las Vegas, Netflix Chief Executive Officer Reed Hastings said he plans to take the company's online video streaming and video rental service global.

Hastings said Netflix would provide users around the world with a cheaper alternative to cable service, The Washington Post reported.

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Hastings made the predictions this week at the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

"We will be a great force for consumers and content producers," Hastings said. "We would be best friends for content producers and best friends for consumers because of our low price and great solution."

Netflix will accomplish its goals through the convergence of the Internet and television, Hastings said. LG, Samsung, Sony and Panasonic were among the manufacturers displaying Internet-equipped televisions at the CES.

The company's biggest challenge is acquiring a broader library to draw in viewers. So far, Netflix has agreements with such companies as MGM, Paramount, Lionsgate and Starz.

Cable and telcom providers downplay Netflix's threat to take over the industry.

Time Warner Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bewkes has called Netflix a "200-pound chimp," and said the company could face steeper fees from content providers such as Starz.

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