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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 rtrski on 1/13/2010 3:20:16 PM , Rating: 2
...as anyone already using the Wii to play games knows.

It's an option for those who don't have (or want) an Xbox or PS3, and for those on intermediate-stage HDTVs (e.g. 1080i or 720p standards, possibly even without HDMI connections) that haven't bothered to get a BluRay player either. Yes, I fall in that category.

And for those of you resolution snobs, you should STILL be happy this is coming. More set-top boxes available = bigger potential customer base for Netflix, as well as bigger demand for streaming hence more of their titles are likely to be converted to streaming.

I believe I've read their long-term goal is all-streaming, no mailing of physical media at all. We all know that'll take a while and maybe 'never' happen (by the time the infrastructure can support Blu-ray type datarates for streaming, we'll be into 3D or something else that takes still higher data rates). But surely any major uptick in retail customer base equates to a corresponding impetus to have the titles available to make that streaming worthwhile.


"If they're going to pirate somebody, we want it to be us rather than somebody else." -- Microsoft Business Group President Jeff Raikes

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