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Xbox 360 will be the only game console to stream Netflix content

Microsoft frequently rolls out updates for the Xbox LIVE service that adds new features for Xbox owners. The latest update for Xbox Live is coming soon with some features set to roll out this week. Starting on August 13, Xbox owners will be available to browse and purchase Games on Demand on the Xbox Live Marketplace.

The update also adds a new Avatar Marketplace that will offer props for Avatars and the ability to download and purchase premium items like clothing for the player's avatar. The slick Netflix streaming service is also getting an update that adds new features like Party Watch that lets users watch a show with friends at the same time if the movie is supported. Content search is improved in the update and the playback experience is reportedly improved as well.

One key announcement that Microsoft has made in conjunction with details on the new Live Update is to reveal that the Xbox 360 will be the only game console that is able to stream Netflix content. Microsoft has announced that it has an exclusive partnership with Netflix. That means owners of the Wii and PS3 waiting to join the Netflix streaming service are out of luck.

Account management features will be updated to prompt subscribers to renew their Windows Live IDs and subscriptions when they expire. Gold member Veterans will also get a special card and may get other unnamed perks as well.

The update adds various fixes to the console's video display options to make viewing content in the highest supported resolution easier to do. User ratings are being tightly integrated into XBOX Live allowing users to rate content on the Marketplace with a 5-star system and games and other content will be sortable by these ratings.

Various improvements are being made with the UI with the dashboard being reorganized to make finding things easier. Xbox Live Community Games has been renamed Xbox Live Indie Games, and achievement tracking and an achievement browser is available as well. Microsoft says that ore features are coming this fall with integration of Facebook, Twitter, Last.fm, and Zune Video in the Xbox Live features.



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Netflix updates
By Parhel on 8/11/2009 10:45:03 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Content search is improved in the update and the playback experience is reportedly improved as well.


In the current interface, you can't search for content at all. You have to add movies to your queue from your PC, and then you can watch them on the XBox.

I rec'd an e-mail from MS the other day about the update. I took it that you'd be able to search through the Netflix library from your XBox now, but it was a bit vague. And the screenshot posted in the article is the same as the current XBox Netflix screen, so I'm a bit confused.

Does anyone know if this is true? I bought my XBox primarily for Netflix and Media Center, so that would be a welcome update for me.




RE: Netflix updates
By snbdr on 8/11/2009 11:10:03 AM , Rating: 2
From what I know this is true. You will be able to search for content and add it from the x-box interface. The only problem that I have with it is that you can only search the top 50 movies in each category. And there is no search function.


RE: Netflix updates
By rburnham on 8/12/2009 10:44:12 AM , Rating: 2
That sounds very similar to what you can do on Netflix under Windows Media Center. There is no actual search feature where you can type in names of movies, but you can browse the categories. It has been a welcome feature, as we don't own a 360 but we've had a PC hooked up to our TV for the last 4 years and it's been well worth it.


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