San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Netflix to launch in Costa Rica next Monday

Netflix, the California-based video rental company, will launch its movie and TV streaming service on Sept. 12 in Costa Rica. The company began service in Brazil on Monday and will expand into 43 other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean by next week.

Although Netflix offers DVD delivery service in the U.S., its Latin American expansion will only allow for streaming from the thousands of movies and TV shows on the company’s website.

The subscription cost for the unlimited streaming of movies and TV shows via the Internet will be $7.99 per month in Costa Rica.

“We are excited to be bringing Netflix to Latin America and the Caribbean,” said Reed Hastings, co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Netflix in a press release. “People throughout the region are online in ever-greater numbers and they love movies and TV shows.”

But Netflix faces challenges with its push into Latin America. High-speed broadband Internet reaches significantly fewer homes than in the U.S.  Additionally, Netflix will have to compete with pirated movies that can be bought for a dollar on the street.

As of March 2011, Netflix had 22.8 million subscribers in the U.S. Netflix already expanded to Canada in 2010. But company stock prices have dropped due to price increases announced in July and stalled contract negotiations between Netflix and Starz, a main provider of Netflix’s streaming library.

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