Netflix Rentals on the Xbox 360

July 15, 2008

NetflixYep, it finally happened. Well not yet, but soon. As a part of this fall’s Xbox Live update, Xbox 360 users will be able to access Netflix’s vast and ever growing library of films at (according to John Schapper, corporate VP of Xbox Live) no additional cost.

“Netflix has revolutionized the movie industry, and now that service is available free to all Xbox Live members and Netflix subscribers,” said John Schapper, corporate VP of Xbox Live. “Xbox 360 is the only game system to offer this content at no additional cost to Xbox Live gamers.”

Like we said back in January of 07, this service was a natural considering Microsoft and Netflix’s close ties. Now the question is, will this really add much to either companies bottom line? No additional cost on Microsoft’s end means they’re hoping the allure of being able to watch the films on-demand will draw in new 360 owners.

And unless Netflix is planning a special pricing tier for the service, their only real gain would be gamers who thus far haven’t subscribed to the service. I sense an unforeseen gotcha lurking just below the surface here, its probably just the pessimist in me though.



Posted by Bryan Greenway | | Filed Under Media Servers


Comments

  • rl1856

    Indeed free if you already have both Netflix and Xbox Live accounts. However, your pool of movies is limited compared to the library offered by Netflix. Quality is less than DVD, but still better than basic analog cable. Between this and the ability to stream from Hulu, Joost, Fancast etc, you never have the leave the couch !

  • rl1856

    Indeed free if you already have both Netflix and Xbox Live accounts. However, your pool of movies is limited compared to the library offered by Netflix. Quality is less than DVD, but still better than basic analog cable. Between this and the ability to stream from Hulu, Joost, Fancast etc, you never have the leave the couch !

  • Jacob

    Will wait to see how well this works. If it works well I will probably by a 2nd xbox for my living room to stream the movies and as a media center extender (1st is in the basement), rather than the HP Media Smart Connect I was considering.

  • Jacob

    Will wait to see how well this works. If it works well I will probably by a 2nd xbox for my living room to stream the movies and as a media center extender (1st is in the basement), rather than the HP Media Smart Connect I was considering.

  • Chris

    I would argue Netflix has a lot to gain by pushing this apporach through as many avenues as possible. Value for Netflix is that they have invested heavily to promote streaming movies and need to increase its utilization which today is limited to PCs. The switch takes out the labor they pay to have people inspect, store, pull, and ship movies, the postal costs, replacement disk costs, and the packaging consumables. It allows Netflix to provide unlimited “copies” of the movies at the same time, instead of the typical “long wait” for new releases. I’d love to see it stream to a PSP as well as the PS3. I’m not aware of any HD content Netflix is streaming, and it remains to be seen probably how well it would then upscale that content on the Xbox to a HD television. Would be better to stream to PSP as screen resolution is better matched to content at Netflix.

  • Chris

    I would argue Netflix has a lot to gain by pushing this apporach through as many avenues as possible. Value for Netflix is that they have invested heavily to promote streaming movies and need to increase its utilization which today is limited to PCs. The switch takes out the labor they pay to have people inspect, store, pull, and ship movies, the postal costs, replacement disk costs, and the packaging consumables. It allows Netflix to provide unlimited “copies” of the movies at the same time, instead of the typical “long wait” for new releases. I’d love to see it stream to a PSP as well as the PS3. I’m not aware of any HD content Netflix is streaming, and it remains to be seen probably how well it would then upscale that content on the Xbox to a HD television. Would be better to stream to PSP as screen resolution is better matched to content at Netflix.

  • Corey

    There are two gotcha’s:

    1) Netflix doesn’t offer A-list titles via it’s download service. They simply don’t have the necessary agreements with the major studios (like Apple for instance).

    2) It’s only free with an Xbox Live Gold membership. So it’s not really free – at least not for me.

    BTW – there is currently a free plugin for Xbox 360 and Vista Home Premium+ users that allows this functionality via the Vista Media Center:

    http://lifehacker.com/396881/turn-your-xbox-360-into-a-streaming-netflix-player

    Unless MS or Netflix disables the use of such a free plugin, it’s cheaper for me to upgrade to Vista, though I don’t want to!

    Cheers,
    Corey

  • Corey

    There are two gotcha’s:

    1) Netflix doesn’t offer A-list titles via it’s download service. They simply don’t have the necessary agreements with the major studios (like Apple for instance).

    2) It’s only free with an Xbox Live Gold membership. So it’s not really free – at least not for me.

    BTW – there is currently a free plugin for Xbox 360 and Vista Home Premium+ users that allows this functionality via the Vista Media Center:

    http://lifehacker.com/396881/turn-your-xbox-360-into-a-streaming-netflix-player

    Unless MS or Netflix disables the use of such a free plugin, it’s cheaper for me to upgrade to Vista, though I don’t want to!

    Cheers,
    Corey

  • paulc

    My understanding is that one has to already be a Netflix subscriber. Plus, all films are only SD.

  • paulc

    My understanding is that one has to already be a Netflix subscriber. Plus, all films are only SD.