Expect Time Warner/Comcast Cable to Offer Netflix

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- A few months back, I ranted about a scoop I had ...

Despite the media gushing over "talks" that would lead to Netflix (NFLX) becoming an a la carte cable option, I told you it wasn't going to happen. And, in October, that was good information.

However, things have changed.

If regulators approve the Time Warner Cable (TWC)/Comcast (CMCSA) deal -- and I don't consider this a slam dunk -- expect cable, big and small, to offer Netflix.

In fact, I will go so far as to guarantee that if Netflix wants this to happen, it will happen. For that matter, just about anybody else -- be it Hulu or Amazon.com (AMZN) Instant Video -- will be able to receive the same treatment.

Here's why ... because why not?

The TWC/Comcast behemoth should, in theory, be good for consumers from a cost standpoint. That's because the combined company has unprecedented pricing power over the networks. The timing of existing contracts aside, this sets up a scenario where TWC/Comcast can and will turn the screws on everybody.

Theoretically, this portends lower prices for consumers. Because TWC/Comcast will control relationships with, say, Time Warner's (TWX) HBO and Disney's (DIS) family of networks like never before. Even ESPN.

Gone are the days of Disney extorting cable with ... You want ESPN, you also have to carry ESPNU and ESPN Yugoslavia III. They'll have to give in on the number of throwaway networks TWC/Comcast carries and on the price they pay to broadcast the ones viewers actually want.

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