Provided you live in the United States or Canada, Netflix is now available as a download from the Wii Shop channel. The Nintendo Wii is the last of the three major consoles to offer disc-less Netflix streaming, while the Xbox 360 had it all along.
"At this time of year, consumers have a near-insatiable demand for family entertainment," said Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime. "And this simplified Netflix access will help bring families together more quickly, more easily and in more ways than ever before. More than 3 million Wii systems have already connected to Netflix, demonstrating how easy the service is to set up and use."
The new Will channel doesn't cost anything, though you will need a Netflix plan starting at $8.99/month. Netflix has been available on the Wii since April 12, 2010, but prior to today streaming Netflix content required the use of a disc. This is a nice upgrade, albeit limited by the Wii's max 480P output.
Microsoft tied up the exclusive rights to disk free Netflix console streaming, but all things must come to an end, and I’m sure most PS3 owners are more than happy to count this odd business deal among them. Starting today US viewers can download the new disk-free Netflix application from the Sony Store, even though the actual service behind it won’t go live until tomorrow.
Early impressions of the new Netflix PS3 interface is overwhelmingly positive with support for 1080p, 5.1 surround sound, and even closed captioning if the title supports it. With the Wii capped at 480p, the Xbox 360 capped at 720p, the PS3 which will support resolutions up to 1080p is starting to look like the superior solution. Very few titles will support the higher resolutions at launch, but this will no doubt chance fairly quickly.
Do you intend to start using your PS3 for Netflix over your previous solution?
Initially, mobile handset vendors will have to embed a special chip to enable WHDI connectivity, but Amimon hopes to change that by adding a small logic to Wi-Fi’s MAC, paving the way for a “WHDI in software IP” solution, offering vendors “low-cost, low-power, virtually zero-latency, high-range wireless video capability for free.”
It is common knowledge that Google’s wet dreams are almost exclusively comprised of browsers. So it shouldn’t surprise anyone that the search giant sees a browser in every TV. According to Rishi Chandra, a senior product manager at Google, the time when all TVs will ship with built-in browsers is near. He made these comments while talking to CNN’s Google blogger Seth Weintraub.
Chandra is confident that GoogleTV will escape the miserable fate of similar undertakings before it. He believes they got the timing all wrong, whereas “we are at a tipping point” now. The company expects GoogleTV to be a graduated hit, a la Android, rather than an instant hit.
Owners of the PS3 have been able to watch Netflix streaming content on their consoles for some time now. The only problem is that it required a special streaming disc to be in the machine. But according to Sony, a new disc-free Netflix streaming solution is coming to the PS3 on October 18. The application will be free and it will be installed to the console like other apps.
The interface is completely redesigned, and includes search capability. Users will finally be able to add items to the queue right from the PS3. Netflix on the PS3 will also be serving up 1080p HD video and 5.1 surround sound, when the content supports it. Other Netflix solutions are stuck at 720p for the time being. If that's not enough, the PS3 will also support subtitles.
The UI looks slick in the video, but that might be trickery. We'll reserve judgment until the app rolls out, but it will be nice to get rid of that disc once and for all. Any Netflix subscribers taking another look at the PS3 as a streaming device?
If you live in the US, odds are you've used Hulu. You probably even think it's a cool service. But do you think it's worth $2 billion? That's apparently what Hulu thinks they're worth according to a report from Reuters. Sources say that Hulu is looking to raise $200-300 million in an IPO, which would value the entire company at about $2 billion.
The official filing should hit the SEC late in 2010, meaning the IPO will happen in the first half of 2011. Sure, these are some big numbers, but investors are still skittish. Hulu's entire business model relies on their network partners continued generosity. If they chose not to license content to Hulu, the site would quickly die. As it is, Hulu has to pay nearly half its ad revenue to content partners.
The recently launched subscription service is perhaps another way to pull in some cash, but it remains to be seen if Hulu can attract significant numbers of users. Still more, can they get the content deals to fill out the selection? What do you think Hulu's future holds?
In addition to free healthcare, Newegg, and some of the best bacon in the world, Canada now has access to Netlfix's streaming service, the online movie rental company announced.
"Jessie Becker here, delighted to tell you that today our neighbors to the north (or 'neighbours,' to use the Canadian spelling) can instantly watch unlimited movies and TV episodes from Netflix to TVs and computers for only CDN$7.99 a month," Jessie Becker, of Head of Marketing, Netflix, announced in a blog post.
This marks the first time Netflix has ventured outside of the U.S, and depending on how things go, more territories are likely to follow.
"For now, we're focused on Canada," Reed Hastings, CEO, Netflix, said. "If we succeed in Canada, we will certainly look at other markets.
Hastings said "Western Europe, Latin America, Asia, or Russia" could all be future destinations, adding "It's unlikely to be Africa, but other than that, all continents are open."
Take note cable companies, more than a third of Netflix subscribers aged 25 to 34 have chosen the online movie rental's streaming service over pay television. That's according to a new survey by Credit Suisse, which also found that about 30 percent of Netflix's subscribers aged 18 to 24 made the same decision.
"Netflix's low cost, subscription streaming service (with improving content) is our biggest worry and could become 'good enough' for consumers with moderate income and TV usage to use as a substitute for pay TV," said Credit Suisse's Spencer Wang.
The survey only pinged 250 Netflix subscribers, but initial findings should be cause for concern for cable operators. According to the survey, 17 percent, or almost one in five, of Netflix subscribers of all ages and incomes have migrated to Netflix's streaming service in place of cable TV.
"In the near term, we submit that Big Media has a small window of opportunity to control its own destiny," said Credit Suisse. "The major U.S. entertainment conglomerates control 70 percent of all TV viewing through its various broadcast, basic cable, and premium TV networks and channels. And, content remains the lifeblood for distribution systems."
OnLive's cloud-based gaming service launched in June with Wi-Fi support conspicuously missing from its armory. While OnLive's lack of Wi-Fi support was never really a pressing concern for the vast majority of the world's population, it did matter to both the service's early adopters and detractors, with some admittedly ardent fans even stooping to such abject lows as building Ethernet loopback adapters to pass off their Wi-Fi connection as a wired one.
Home theater PCs are the ultimate digital entertainment systems, capable of delivering everything from movies, games, YouTube videos, and more. Connect one to your home network and you can access all your music, digital photos, and digital home videos, too. We show you how to create the ultimate “HTPC” on this issue’s bundled disc.