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Print 46 comment(s) - last by therealnickdan.. on Jan 14 at 3:22 PM

Service will require a disc on the Wii

Netflix is blowing up with new subscribers flocking to the service rather than heading out to the video rental store. Many movie junkies are also now using rental kiosks like those available from Redbox and Blockbuster – movie rental practices for the masses are changing.

One of the coolest things that Netflix has done is to team up with other companies to create an ecosystem of devices from game consoles to Blu-ray players and HDTVs that are capable of streaming on-demand films and TV shows from Netflix. Netflix has seen its profits soar by 48% despite the poor global economy.

In August of 2009, Netflix and Microsoft announced that the Xbox 360 would be the exclusive "native" streaming partner for Netflix on-demand content. Gamers who owned platforms other than the Xbox 360 were probably a bit bummed that their consoles would get no Netflix love. Luckily, Netflix had a trick up its sleeve that allowed it to skirt that exclusivity with Netflix for the PS3.

In October 2009, Netflix and Sony announced that access to Netflix content would be coming to the PS3 game console this spring. Rather than a baked in streaming service like the Xbox 360 offers, the PS3 would get Netflix content using a Blu-ray disc and BD-Live technology. The Blu-ray disc does have to be in the PS3 for the service to work.

Today, Netflix and Nintendo have announced that the Wii is now going to be the third and final major console to get access to the on-demand streaming content library. Netflix again skirts the exclusive deal with Microsoft by offering a disc that has to be in the Wii at all times for the content to be accessible.

Users will need at least a $9 monthly subscription to Netflix to access the streaming catalog. The PS3 and Wii will be cheaper ways to access streaming Netflix content than the Xbox 360. Xbox users are required to have an Xbox Live gold membership to access Netflix content.



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RE: Awesome
By Hiawa23 on 1/13/2010 9:53:37 AM , Rating: 0
It's not bad, it's just not ideal. As someone who watches Netflix HD on my 360, it is obscenely better than standard 480p streaming. Almost all modern TV shows are streamed in HD and the number of HD movies is growing.

So yeah, Wii users can not expect the same level of service as a 360 user (or other HD-enabled devices). Don't expect too much.


you bring up some good points, but I don't think any Wii owner would expect the same level as say the 360 or PS3, but HD doesn't, atleast in my estimation make movies infinitely better than standard def. A turd is still a turd in HD. This is a win win, & if you only own a Wii you don't care about HD anyways.


RE: Awesome
By therealnickdanger on 1/13/2010 10:25:27 AM , Rating: 2
Obviously a turd in HD is still a turd... so why would anyone want to watch a turd in the first place? That's a straw man if I've ever seen one.

As a recent Wii owner myself (my fiancée has one along with a PS2 and a 360), I can be counted as one of the many people that have a Wii and an HDTV. While I never expect the graphics of Wii games to be good (don't care), the Wii as a Netflix player is useless to me without HD.

For someone with no other option, this is a great thing. It would be nice if Nintendo would toss in a scaler chip and an HDMI controller so HD would at least be possible for those that have it.


RE: Awesome
By Spivonious on 1/13/2010 10:33:10 AM , Rating: 2
Can someone tell me if Netflix HD streaming is truly HD, and not just upsampled by the player? Most standard streaming I watch is about 80% DVD quality, which to me says compressed 480p.


RE: Awesome
By Spivonious on 1/13/2010 10:38:48 AM , Rating: 2
Nevermind, found a couple screenshots and it is definitely better.

I hope this comes to Win7 MC soon.


RE: Awesome
By therealnickdanger on 1/13/2010 11:11:18 AM , Rating: 2
Even though you already have your answer:

Netflix provides two quality levels of HD streams:
720p VC1 Advanced Profile - 2.6Mbps or 3.8Mbps.

Compared to a Blu-Ray's maximum 1080p @ 40Mbps (most Blu-Ray discs hover around 20Mbps), that doesn't seem like much, but compared to Netflix's 480p 500kbps, 1Mbps, 1.6Mbps and 2.2Mbps levels, it's a dramatic improvement.


RE: Awesome
By The0ne on 1/13/2010 11:11:48 AM , Rating: 2
It's not true HD (720p), they downsample for bandwidth sake. There's a netflix article explaining this on their site. A true HD source will require much more bandwidth, again many articles on search (don't use Google until they pull out of China heheh).

But most people are not going to care coming from SD. My co-worker loves it although he has Blu-ray. Actually, he loves the convenience.

And I just wanted to say a turd movie in SD is 10x more of a turd in HD. Cause HD makes it that much "clearer", which in this case might make you vomit.


RE: Awesome
By therealnickdanger on 1/13/2010 12:15:45 PM , Rating: 2
Nonsense. If I remember correctly, Sony started all this when they started labeling their electronics with stickers that said "True High-Definition 1080p". The marketeers want you to believe that if it's not 1080p, it's not HD, but that's not true. The reality is that "high-definition" is anything of higher resolution than "standard-definition" (480i/p). Please see this chart for a complete list of ALL accepted HD formats and keep the ignorance to a minimum:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High-definition_video

Also, keep in mind that regardless of bitrate of percieved image quality, a source must only meet the resolution requirement of HD to be considered HD.


RE: Awesome
By Alexstarfire on 1/13/2010 1:38:44 PM , Rating: 2
That might be technically true, but that's about it.


RE: Awesome
By The0ne on 1/13/2010 2:45:30 PM , Rating: 2
Sorry but you're alone in thinking it's only the resolution that counts. I'm sure plenty of us could produce a HD video or 480P or more that's way crappy for you to view, and I'm sure you wouldn't like that.

And yes, I'm aware of what is considered HD but as some users have stated once you start producing 1080P and/or have the sources generally you are referring to HD of 720P or higher, of which 1080P in general. And HD did NOT start with 1080p. There's a progression to 1080p where along the line each one has been called HD. But we're at 1080p now and growing, and if it happens we'll be at twice the resolution in later years.

And I am fully aware of the marketing that companies are putting out there particularly because I love cameras. Most of these are no more than gimmicks and I hope they improve upon them by the end of this year. That is if you can live with 24fps and still not complain that your game doesn't run at 15000000 fps.

So what do you think the general public view as HD regardless of the spec? What do you consider as HD? Should I provide you with a crappy 1080p (1920x1080) video so you can make up your mind to not stray from the wiki info? Maybe visit avs forums for more technical info.

But I agree with you, keep the ignorance to a minimun please. For God's sake or Homer's sake.


RE: Awesome
By 91TTZ on 1/13/2010 3:14:17 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The reality is that "high-definition" is anything of higher resolution than "standard-definition" (480i/p). Please see this chart for a complete list of ALL accepted HD formats and keep the ignorance to a minimum:


False.

From that article:

"High-definition television (HDTV) resolution is 1080 or 720 lines"

Later on in the article they list several different "HDTV" standards, including 576, 720, 1080, etc, then go on to say that the 576p standard is considered HD only in Australia.

"EDTV" (enhanced definition) stands between high definition and standard definition. It didn't look as good as high-def and never really caught on.


RE: Awesome
By Black69ta on 1/14/2010 3:50:32 AM , Rating: 2
Actually I thought that when the HD standard was 1st conceived that HD meant 1080 and ED was 720 and SD was 480. What happened to this terminology, TV's would be much easier to buy if they still used this nomenclature, of course OEM 's would make less on 720's if there was less confusion.


RE: Awesome
By therealnickdanger on 1/14/2010 3:22:14 PM , Rating: 2
You guys are all confusing HDTV standards with what technically qualifies a video source as being "high-definition".

Modern HDTVs come in two primary flavors: 720p and 1080p. They are both counted as "high definition" displays. All content, lower or higher resolution, is forced to fit the native resolution of the display.

HD video sources, on the other hand, can come in roughly any resolution greater than 480. As factually stated, Australia touts 576p (not 576i PAL) as being HD, even though America doesn't. Most 30" computer displays are greater than 1920x1080, but they are not called HDTVs. My whole point is that organization of video resolutions is categorically seperate than that of the display standards. While the mainstream definition of "HD" for both displays and video is 1080p, that is not the only definition.

As with all of those video sources, quality can vary at any stage from filming to encoding to playback. While I wouldn't consider a blurry, muddled, poorly transfered Blu-Ray to be ideal, you can't argue that it isn't 1080p if the transfer from the film was 1080p. This is why it's important to read reviews of Blu-Rays before buying them. There's a reason why "Gone With The Wind" looks better than "The Fugitive" even though both are 1080p. A sad state of affairs...


RE: Awesome
By The Raven on 1/13/2010 11:34:06 AM , Rating: 2
You could use it on a 14" and never know the difference.

We have a 14" in the bedroom for casual viewing (watching MacGuyver episodes on NFLX) Looks great at 8'.

It is actually a relative HD to our eyes when you factor in visual pixel size at that distance.

Anyway, if you don't have any small TVs like we do then disregard my observations, but for the rest of us who still use <26" screens, the improvement with HD is small or possibly unnoticable.

But I'm right there with you on my 40" @ 8'. So that's why the Wii is going in the bedroom and we'll let the 360 stream to the 40" ;-)


RE: Awesome
By cmdrdredd on 1/13/2010 5:44:11 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
This is a win win, & if you only own a Wii you don't care about HD anyways.


Not when some Blu-Ray players support NetFlix in HD.


"Google fired a shot heard 'round the world, and now a second American company has answered the call to defend the rights of the Chinese people." -- Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-N.J.)

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