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Netflix executive Robert Kyncl joins Google in a sign the search giant's getting serious about TV

Robert Kyncl, one of the key architects of Netflix's popular on-demand streaming service, has joined Google Inc.

Kyncl (pronounced kin' suhl) is to be vice president of content partnerships, the Wall Street Journal reported. Netflix confirmed Kyncl's departure.

"He was a key person in our content acquisition team, and he did leave to work for Google," said Netflix spokesman Steve Swasey.

Google declined to confirm the appointment and said in an e-mailed statement, "Across Google, we are always focused on hiring top talent. Outside of this, we have nothing to announce at this time.”

As vice president of digital content acquisition at Netflix, Kyncl helped Netflix amass thousands of titles its subscribers can stream on-demand from their Internet-connected TVs and devices, such as the Apple iPad, Sony Dash and TiVo digital video recorder.

Kyncl, who once worked at HBO, helped Netflix negotiate a deal last month with Epix, a joint venture between Viacom Inc., Paramount Pictures, MGM Studios Inc. and Lions Gate. The deal added about 3,000 movies to the Netflix service, which now has more than 23,000 titles.

Presumably, Kyncl will help Google build similar relationships with Hollywood for its Google TV plans announced earlier this year.

-- Alex Pham

 
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