Hastings said they were developing plans to launch a "modest" service in China if it can acquire permission to operate in the world's most populous country. It is notable that in China people are are used to watching entertainment for free that is either supported by ads or illegally pirated.
Netflix offers on-demand TV shows and movies without commercials to customers who pay a monthly subscription price. "Our focus and our expertise is really in commercial free. That may confine us to being only part of the market the first couple years, but that's what we would do," Hastings said.
Netflix's video streaming service is currently operational in roughly 50 countries and the company is aiming to reach 200 by the end of 2016. The overseas growth strategy adopted by Hastings is quite aggressive and it has helped the company beat its own forecast by reaching 62.3 million streaming subscribers at the end of the March quarter.
For China, "we are continuing to explore options talking to both U.S. companies that have had success and difficulty in China and Chinese companies," Hastings said. "It's a gradual process."
Ted Sarandos, the company's chief content officer, said last month that the company was planning to not seek a local partner to enter the Chinese market. On Wednesday, Sarandos told analysts the press reports of his remarks were "a little bit out of context."
"We're anxious and open to all forms of doing business in China," Sarandos said on a webcast following the company's earnings report.