We've gotta hand it to Netflix. The company has just announced a pretty major milestone--there were over one billion hours of video content streamed from Netflix in the month of June. Netflix CEO Reed Hastings made the announcement on Facebook, stating that he expects that upcoming Netflix exclusives like House of Cards and Arrested Development season four will help "blow these records away."
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We told you that Netflix had secured Mad Men for a July 27th debut on Watch Instantly, and now we're here to remind you that the first four seasons of the hit show will be available to instantly stream starting tomorrow. Now that Netflix Watch Instantly is a $7.99 per month product, it's good to see some quality content appearing on the service, right?
Read More | TV Envy
All you PS3 owners out there who are tired of having to manually insert that Netflix disc whenever you wanna get your streaming on, listen up! Netflix has just announced that, starting October 18th, the PS3 disc will no longer be required. Even better news? PS3 owners will be able to stream some content in
1080i 1080p resolution, and 5.1-channel Dolby Digital Plus surround sound. The PS3 is the first to get these oft-requested features, and even more curious is the fact that they seem to be left out of the Xbox 360's upcoming dashboard update that is set to drop in November.
So, yeah Netflix, it's definitely cool and all that you are finally bringing out the big guns with your instant streaming service, and we'll definitely be defaulting to the PS3 for our viewing starting on the 18th--but can we get a little device parity here?
Wanna get a look at how it works? Hit up the video after the break.
Playstation users have had access to Netflix for awhile now, but it’s been somewhat of a clumsy experience up until now. This is because unlike its Xbox 360 equivalent, PS3 requires a disc to run Netflix. This has proven to feel like a tacked on experience rather than the full quality experience seen on the 360. A little frustrating when you have to constantly swap out the Netflix disc in order to play a game or watch a film. However, it seems that PS3 users will finally have a Netflix app added into the actually dashboard that will allow them to seamlessly enjoy the Netflix experience. There’s no official date for when this change will happen, but according to Reed Hastings, the CEO of Netflix, it will happen very soon.
“Before our next call in October, we expect to be launching a major new version of our Sony PS3 user interface which doesn’t require a disc and is dynamically updated continuously with the latest Netflix UI improvements,” states Hastings.
Hopefully these Netflix updates will make for a similar experience to the one seen on Microsoft’s machine, and a less stiff experience than the one currently offered on PS3.
You can grab a two-week free Netflix trial to try out the service yourself.
Our inbox has been blowing up with a bunch of readers letting us know that the Netflix Instant Streaming discs for Wii have finally started shipping. Netflix has been sending emails to members who signed up to receive the disc, letting them know to expect it to arrive in the mail tomorrow. Exciting for Wii owners who don’t own any other Netflix-enabled device, since the Wii is pretty much the only modern Netflix streaming device that doesn’t support high definition playback.
If you’re a Playstation 3 owner who ordered one of the Netflix Instant Streaming discs, you’ll be happy to know that they’ve started shipping to customer as of today. In fact, our disc is scheduled to arrive tomorrow, alongside copious amounts of junk mail, we’re sure. The disc is the only way you’ll be able to enjoy the Netflix Watch Instantly service on your PS3 for the time being, so if you want to get in on that action and haven’t already done so, go ahead and order your disc. You do need to have an active Netflix membership as well, of course.
We are kicking off our 2009 Holiday Gift Guide with the Roku HD-XR player. Why? Well, we think that it’s the perfect time to introduce someone to the new hotness that is TV, delivered over the web, and right into the living room. Sure, Netflix has come to the Xbox 360, but if you want streaming access to the Netflix service and don’t own a game console, this is your cheapest barrier to entry. The HD-XR model also gives you access to the Amazon Unbox catalogue, as well as the entire MLB game service as well, if you are subscribed.
Definitely a great gift for movie buffs, the Roku HD-XR player is able to stream over 12,000 movies and television shows from the Netflix Watch Instantly catalogue, and over 45,000 from Amazon Video on Demand. It connects to your home network through an ethernet port, or over Wi-Fi, connecting at up to 802.11n if you have it. There’s also a USB port on back, which Roku says is for future use. Our guess is that they’ll be allowing the device to read from an external USB drive, which would be stellar.
The actual device is tiny, so it takes up barely any space, and setup takes just a couple of minutes - very simple. Of course, a Netflix subscription is required, but once you have that, everything else is a piece of cake.
Honorable Mention: If you want all the features of the Roku HD-XR, but don’t need the USB port or 802.11n wireless speeds, you can grab the Roku HD Player for $99!
Read More | Roku HD-XR
To the average Amazon consumer, this may be an odd pairing at first glance. However, as broadband penetration becomes more widespread throughout the US, digital movie download services will slowly drive a nail through physical disk media rental services. Both Amazon and Netflix offer movie streaming services right now. Many users of the Netflix service have complained about the lack of newer content being available. Amazon however, offers new movies for rent and download. Together, though, you have one hell of an offering.
A Netflix acquisition for Amazon would mean up airing of these two services, which in the eyes of many a digital downloader would be perfection.
Of course this is all rumor, and we won’t know for sure until something official comes out of either camp. However, looking at the stock surge, there certainly seems to be something up at Netflix. Do note, however, a similar rumor cropped up about two years ago, and nothing ever came of it.
Read More | Bloomberg
Netflix continues their push for dominance today with their integration into Windows Media Center on PCs running either Windows Vista Home Premium or Vista Ultimate. If your Windows machine runs either of those operating systems, all you have to do is pull up Media Center, and in the TV + Movies section, you’ll now see a Netflix tile, powered by Silverlight. The cool thing here is that, unlike on some other devices, you can browse and search the entire Netflix library, manage both your Instant and DVD Queues, and even sort search results to just show titles available to watch instantly. I must say, we are loving how aggressive Netflix is being about getting their Watch Instantly service on more and more platforms. Wanna bet they soon appear on Apple TV?