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Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has claimed that the streaming giant’s biggest rivals aren’t Amazon, YouTube or even traditional broadcasters. According to Mr Hastings, our need for sleep is actually its main barrier. “You know, think about it, when you watch a show from Netflix and you get addicted to it, you stay up late at night,” he said.  “We’re competing with sleep, on the margin. And so, it’s a very large pool of time.”

Mr Hastings stopped short of announcing a new technology capable of helping us recharge without snoozing, though he did go on to make some surprising comments about downloads. The company bowed to pressure by launching the much-requested offline viewing feature last year, but Mr Hastings doesn’t think much of it. “It’s pretty small impact,” he said. “I mean, you’re not on airplanes or cars that much of your life, so it’s really nice to have when you use it. But at least in Western and more well-off markets, where networks are strong and relatively inexpensive, it’s a modest feature.”

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