It’s odd to think that there was a time before Netflix. People had to watch shows on the day and time that they aired, and they had to catch films while they were still in theaters. It was simply archaic! Just look at Netflix’s very first logo, for example. It’s pretty much a Microsoft Windows-inspired cave painting.
We’re so used to seeing the red-on-black or white Netflix logo on our computer screens almost daily, that the streaming site’s humble beginning is often forgotten. And as today marks the 20th anniversary of the streaming platform, it’s time to look back to that humble beginning and give thanks for what it turned into.
And let us tell you — it was very humble.
Most of us can remember when our favorite movie rental service really blew up in the early 2000s. We were getting DVDs mailed to our houses on a weekly basis. And even then, that red Netflix logo was there on those DVD slips, acting as a beacon of joy in every household.
But how did we miss that Times New Roman.com thing? According to Wired, in 1997, NetFlix.com first popped up on the movie rental scene, allowing users to rent a film on the new DVD-Rom format. The DVD arrived at your door and the user could keep said DVD for up to seven days.
The old logo is actually from circa 1998. Netflix was originally originally called Kibble.
Then, in 1999, the company began its subscription service. For $15.95 a month, subscribers could receive four movies a month and keep them for an unlimited time. Yeah, Netflix was pretty much a household investment.
This new service was what changed the film rental industry forever. When Netflix started streaming shows and films in 2007, Blockbusters were dead in the water.
The old logo might be one of the goofiest things we’ve seen today, and better suits a law firm rather than a movie rental site, but we wouldn’t change Netflix’s growing-up process for the world.
Seriously — where would we all be without our Netflix and chill? It’s scary to think about.