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Nintendo Wii To Get Netflix Streaming

CmdrTaco posted more than 4 years ago | from the do-you-see-what-i-see dept.

Movies 213

motang writes "Netflix and Nintendo is set to announce Netflix streaming service for the Wii soon. Subscribers who have the unlimited streaming service can watch non-HD version of the movies on their Wii with a special Netflix disc inserted." The thing I can't understand is why the PS3 and Wii have to require a disc. Both are capable of downloading applications and executing them. Why should I be required to dedicate my disc slot to stream a movie? Of course, my netflix queue is half-filled with Ken Burns documentaries, so if I lost the disc, I think that would just make the wife happier.

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The disc is DRM (1, Troll)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751422)

By requiring you to have the disc, they make it difficult for most people to use the system without proper authorization.

Will it hinder most Slashbots? No. But it isn't meant to stop hardcore copyright infringers. It's meant to stop the average guy from sharing his copy of Netflix with everyone in the neighborhood.

Re:The disc is DRM (3, Interesting)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751496)

No..
NetFlix uses a password. You could give that to everybody and there dog and they could use NetFlix on their PC.
The Wii has limited space for applications it could be that the streaming is too big to store on the Wii.
The real reason I think is that Microsoft got an "exclusive" on putting Netflix "on" a game console.

Re:The disc is DRM (2)

LordKronos (470910) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751630)

You could give that to everybody and there dog and they could use NetFlix on their PC.

Only if "everybody and there [sic] dog" amounts to no more than 6, because that's how many devices netflix only lets you register.

Re:The disc is DRM (-1, Troll)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751640)

You could give that to everybody and there dog and they could use NetFlix on their PC.

But... on the internet, everybody is a dog. Besides, their streaming service is so shitty on the PC that many subscribers of the service still pirate online just because it's easier than trying to convince Silverlight to work. Every new multimedia technology Microsoft creates sucks until the second major revision (at least). Unless they steal it -- I'm looking at you, Windows Media Player, who stole from Quicktime quite blatantly.

Re:The disc is DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30751800)

fail. learn before you post.

Re:The disc is DRM (1)

mcb (5109) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751928)

I use Netflix streaming from my PS3, my Windows PC and my Macbook without any real difficulties. I will admit I only watch the content they offer in HD, the normal stuff looks so bad that I would rather acquire it... another way... than stream it from Netflix.

Re:The disc is DRM (2, Informative)

Saint Gerbil (1155665) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751968)

Err OK Silverlight is on version 3 so by your arbitrary method doesn't suck.
It has a poor take up rate but does a lot more than flash can do but is generally considered harder to work with.

Windows Media Player stolen from Apple! Blimey something build for a different platform and even different processor architecture and running a different proprietary file format is quite a steal.

Re:The disc is DRM (3, Insightful)

jitterman (987991) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751980)

I've been a NetFlix subscriber since about 2001. I can verify that the streaming service was good prior to Silverlight, then sucked it hard for several months as they converted to the new tech, but (at least on Win7) it's been fine for quite a while now.

Every new multimedia technology Microsoft creates sucks until the second major revision (at least).

While I don't think that's an untrue statement in general, it applies to many technologies, both hardware and software. As for hardware, that goes for many things outside the computer industry (car models, washing machines, whatever have you) as real-world use reveals shortcomings the original design and testing didn't take into account.

Re:The disc is DRM (4, Funny)

Max(10) (1716458) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752162)

But... on the internet, everybody is a dog. Besides, their streaming service is so shitty on the PC that many subscribers of the service still pirate online just because it's easier than trying to convince Silverlight to work.

And that's the real reason for the disc requirement - piracy. If you take a closer look at the disc you'll notice that it has a jagged edge, but an average person wouldn't normally notice the difference when handling the disc. Now imagine someone reporting you for pirating movies and your little disc spinning at 25,000 rpm then being shot out at 200 mph.. DRM now stands for Decapitation & Radical Maiming.

Re:The disc is DRM (2, Funny)

Tetsujin (103070) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752338)

But... on the internet, everybody is a dog. Besides, their streaming service is so shitty on the PC that many subscribers of the service still pirate online just because it's easier than trying to convince Silverlight to work.

And that's the real reason for the disc requirement - piracy. If you take a closer look at the disc you'll notice that it has a jagged edge, but an average person wouldn't normally notice the difference when handling the disc. Now imagine someone reporting you for pirating movies and your little disc spinning at 25,000 rpm then being shot out at 200 mph.. DRM now stands for Decapitation & Radical Maiming.

Or... Digital Rights Murder...

Re:The disc is DRM (5, Informative)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751834)

The real reason I think is that Microsoft got an "exclusive" on putting Netflix "on" a game console.

This is 100% correct.
Netflix has even stated so.
There will be a downloadable application (no disc needed) for the PS3 sometime this year.

Re:The disc is DRM (1)

yincrash (854885) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751526)

This doesn't make any sense. Please elaborate further. All devices report to netflix and are linked via one time use account codes to keep track of how many devices are in use under an account. Also, the XBL version of netflix is not on disc.

Re:The disc is DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30751528)

Except they are planning to get rid of the disc requirement later this year. I suspect it was due to some kind of exclusivity deal with Microsoft, but who knows.

Re:The disc is DRM (4, Interesting)

goombah99 (560566) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751646)

THe problem I have with netflix streaming is that on Silverlight it's buffer is so shallow that on my crappy evening comcast connection the movie frequently chatters and stops to rebuffer and degrade resolution.

I asked comcast why they don't have a large buffer mode. I'd be happy to wait 20 minutes for a movie to start if I could get fluid high res playback. It's far more frustrating to watch for 20 minutes and then have to abandon a movie as unwatchable with all the interruptions.

Netflix told me this has to do with some agreement with the studios on what they can deliver, and also in part do yo what silverlight is able to do.

I've been wondering if Roku or now Boxee might have different buffer rules or if it sucks on Silverlight it will suck on Roku too.

Perhaps if they have some new DRM on a closed hardware system they might get concessions that would allow movies to be pre-downloaded at high res. I'd be pretty happy about that.

Re:The disc is DRM (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30751944)

I asked comcast why they don't have a large buffer mode. I'd be happy to wait 20 minutes for a movie to start if I could get fluid high res playback. It's far more frustrating to watch for 20 minutes and then have to abandon a movie as unwatchable with all the interruptions.

That's funny! You expect Comcast to go out of their way to make your non-Comcast-supplied video viewing experience better?

Re:The disc is DRM (2, Informative)

saberworks (267163) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752058)

It will suck on Roku, too, if you have a crappy/inconsistent connection. If it ever drops below a certain threshold, it will just degrade the quality to the next lowest stream it thinks it can support. Roku is worse than xbox/ps3 in that it seems to remember the resolution you usually stream at so even when the connection gets better (other times of the day, for example), it takes it a while to realize it and start getting the higher quality streams.

Re:The disc is DRM (2, Informative)

kcitren (72383) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752572)

Just stop the show and resume where you left off, it seems recalibrate the network speed every time you start a show.

Re:The disc is DRM (4, Informative)

lupine (100665) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752468)

I used to have DSL through TDS until I started having problems with nexflix buffering. The movie would play fine for 1 hour and then start to have buffering issues.
I did some network speed tests using dslreports and a local speedtest server. If I was just doing normal web browsing and then did a speed test I would get a decent speed, plenty good for netflix streaming. Then I tried watching a movie, one hour into it buffering started, I shut down the movie and immediately ran a speed test and found that my bandwidth had been cut exactly in half.

I repeated this test a number of times and then switched to cable internet and told TDS to get fucked - they wanted me to switch to a more expensive plan but did not admit to throttling my connection. Now I have higher speed cable(charter) and haven't noticed any throttling or had any trouble with netflix playback(HD).

Re:The disc is DRM (1)

riff420 (810435) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751656)

No. That's why they have Netflix accounts. Clearly the Netflix streaming application is bigger than the NAND storage capacity, or at least takes up more "blocks" than any given user is willing to dedicate to this.

Poor (1)

Cornwallis (1188489) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751434)

wife.

Re:Poor (1)

corbettw (214229) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752640)

He popped the question to her [slashdot.org] on Slashdot; she knew what she was getting into.

Microsoft (3, Interesting)

absurdhero (614828) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751468)

Microsoft may have an exclusive deal with Netflix to have built-in Netflix support. Simply giving DVDs out with software for the other platforms *without* the possibility to install it may get around this agreement.

Re:Microsoft (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30751544)

From what I understand the netflix streaming API is silverlight. So Microsoft easily implemented this on X-Box. However, ps3 is using the blu-ray live feature to access Netflix and I have no idea what nintendo will use.

I'm assuming Netflix is in the process of overhauling it's streaming system to cooperate with ps3 and wii. Since ps3 is slated as having a software version in the near to distant future (possibly with the implementation of a paid for premium version of the Playstation Network).

However, besides the impending ps3 version...all of this is just assumption.

Re:Microsoft (1)

OrangeTide (124937) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751728)

That doesn't account for Tivo, Boxee or Roku, which can stream it out of the box.

Re:Microsoft (1)

CrankyFool (680025) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751848)

Exclusive for game consoles, I suspect.

Re:Microsoft (3, Informative)

Moryath (553296) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751812)

I don't know about the PS3, but I know technical limitations for memory on the Wii pretty much make this crap anyways.

The Wii can "download" apps, but its internal (flash) memory is incredibly small. Their "run from the SD slot" is a kludge that doesn't actually run the app from the SD slot, it copies it into part of the internal (flash) memory first.

I'm willing to bet the Netflix app is simply too big to fit inside the flash reliably.

Re:Microsoft (0)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752632)

I'm willing to bet the Netflix app is simply too big to fit inside the flash reliably.

Seems to me Netflix on my PC didn't require a hefty download. You could easily get a Netflix-only app on the Wii.

Nintendo already has a "Nintendo channel" where they showcase new games (including streaming video). They already have a TV-type channel in Japan where they show and discuss soap operas or something.

The Wii is pretty weak, sure, but it sure as fuck can stream video and access the net.

Re:Microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30752352)

Microsoft may have an exclusive deal with Netflix to have built-in Netflix support. Simply giving DVDs out with software for the other platforms *without* the possibility to install it may get around this agreement.

This is exactly correct. However, at some point soon, I believe as early as mid year, that contract expired, and then PS3 will be able to download the app (and I would assume Wii as well). Until the contract expires, users are stuck with this work around.

Re:Microsoft (1)

NeutronCowboy (896098) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752518)

Spot-on. I don't have the link ready, but Microsoft had an exclusive deal with Netflix for an embedded player. Something like one year or so. Of course, a disk isn't embedded, and therefore, not subject to exclusivity agreement.

What I'm wondering is the take-up and pay-out numbers. Is it really that much of a pain in the ass - and therefore take-up hurdle - that it significantly impacts utilization? Or did Microsoft just completely overpay for a very limited exclusivity, that really isn't?

ps3 disc (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30751470)

Both Netflix and Sony have stated several times that the requirement of a disc for the PS3 is only a short-term stopgap measure. There will be a future firmware update that includes the Netflix player at some point.

Disc gets around X360 exclusive (1)

tigeba (208671) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751502)

I believe the required disc for PS3 and now Wii is meant to get around the exclusive Xbox360 / Netflix streaming deal that exists currently. My understanding is that when the exclusive deal is over, the Netflix Player could move over to a normal installable program.

Re:Disc gets around X360 exclusive (1)

Bleek II (878455) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751754)

Yes. The 360 is to remain the only system with Netflix built in. Netflix got around the issue with the PS3 because the PS3 Netflix disc uses BD-Live tech and will work in any blue-ray player not just the PS3. I imagine that Wii version is on disc because they can't break their deal with Microsoft being the only system with Netflix built in.

Re:Disc gets around X360 exclusive (1)

CrankyFool (680025) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751868)

I tried the Netflix PS3 streaming disc on my Samsung BD player -- no love. I don't think it'll work on every BD player.

Re:Disc gets around X360 exclusive (1)

PrescriptionWarning (932687) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752862)

Have you tried playing Uncharted 2 on your Samsung BD player yet? I tell you its so realistic, you can even unplug your TV and it looks just as good!

Dear Submitting Slashdot Reader (2, Insightful)

riff420 (810435) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751522)

"Why should I be required to dedicate my disc slot to stream a movie?" For that matter, why should you be required to dedicate your disc slot to play a game? Don't they know I instead could be KEEPING THINGS IN THERE, LIKE SHOPPING LISTS, OR MAYBE THAT PS2 GAME I LOST THE CASE FOR. JESUS FUCKING CHRIST ARE YOU SERIOUSLY WHINING ABOUT THIS? Want to watch a Netflix movie on your Wii? Shut the fuck up and put in the disc. Or drop it onto your favorite USB loader and shut the hell up already.

Q&A (0, Troll)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751550)

Why should I be required to dedicate my disc slot to stream a movie?

DRM vendors love their physical, read-only media. No matter how advanced or compact portable storage gets, they'll always want for it. If for no other reason than they can continue to play tricks with the formatting and physical defects, creating new mutant DRM schemas to visit upon people's machines. Think about it -- why do we have BluRay, which has a maximum capacity of 50GB? They already have solid-state memory devices that only weigh a few grams and have that much storage capacity -- and they don't degrade, scratch, or fall apart after a few months.

It amazed me that people closely watched the HD-DVD vs. BluRay "format war", and never once did they stop and think -- wait, why are we still relying on optical read-only media in the 21st century?

Re:Q&A (3, Insightful)

TheNinjaroach (878876) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751572)

Think about it -- why do we have BluRay, which has a maximum capacity of 50GB? They already have solid-state memory devices that only weigh a few grams and have that much storage capacity -- and they don't degrade, scratch, or fall apart after a few months.

They only cost $100 more per unit. Who needs cheap media anyways?

Re:Q&A (1)

aicrules (819392) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751662)

Because a 50GB SSD costs about $100 per unit at minimum, and who wants to pay $100+the cost of the movie? You? I doubt it. Way cheaper to mass produce CD/DVD/Blu Ray.

Re:Q&A (0)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751960)

Because a 50GB SSD costs about $100 per unit at minimum

who said anything about using an SSD? Did people suddenly forget that we used to have solid-state read-only memory, known as PROMs?

Re:Q&A (1)

aicrules (819392) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752488)

It would still be significantly higher production cost, which I clearly have no basis to put a real number to. Read-only SSD memory is not significantly different in production cost compared to a writable. The cost to product the hardware itself requires much more than a disc, and then the cost to duplicate is also significantly higher because of how long it takes to copy.

Re:Q&A (1)

Big Boss (7354) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751664)

Do you really want to pay $200/movie just for the media? That's the biggest reason we are still using optical media. It's CHEAP to make in huge quantities. We're talking a few cents per unit cheap here. Flash memory, even mask ROM, can't match that price point. That's also the biggest reason that the console guys moved from ROM to optical. More space, less production cost. DRM has little to do with it, it's just as easy to crack DRM on optical media as it is on other formats. Just google for the piracy scenes for the various consoles and movies. The media formats don't matter to the pirates.

Re:Q&A (1)

Zantac69 (1331461) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751668)

...and they don't degrade, scratch, or fall apart after a few months.

Which is exactly WHY they have not transitioned to a "stick" format that you could plug into your player. They prefer to have the media to be a little fragile...that way you might have to replace it if your 3 year-old or your drunk friend mishandles your disc.

Re:Q&A (1)

Reapman (740286) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751706)

Um from my understanding, the DRM is in the username... No I think the reason is far more likely that they have an exclusive agreement for the 360. Remember Sony AND Netflix has said the Disc is a temporary solution. I'm assuming it's temporary for the Wii as well, temporary until the end of the agreement with MS.

Why am I still relying on optical media? The only viable alternative is online. However not only can my ISP not sustain the Bitrate for audio and video that Blu supports (or even HD-DVD supported), but they'd cut me off within a week for going over my usage. The solid state media you talk about is more expensive (compared to a disc) to produce, and honestly doesn't last any longer then an optical disc would, especially if they had to mass produce them to replace every single DVD/BR disc sold. I can get a recordable BR disc for a few bucks, but a 64g stick goes for more then that.

Re:Q&A (1)

cmiller173 (641510) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751774)

It amazed me that people closely watched the HD-DVD vs. BluRay "format war", and never once did they stop and think -- wait, why are we still relying on optical read-only media in the 21st century?

The same reason that CD beat out DAT (digital audio tape). For a tape to be loaded with content each tape had to be run across a record head which is relatively time consuming compared to stamping a CD. Flash memory, even some sort of write once version, still has to be loaded with content and is still orders of magnitude slower than stamping a disc. Plus the huge capacity solid state memory devices are much more expensive.

PS3 will go Disc Free in Late 2010 (5, Insightful)

BBF_BBF (812493) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751558)

Rumor has it that Microsoft has an exclusivity contract with netflix for streaming built into gaming consoles which expires sometime near the end of year.

The PS3 will go disc free later this year, but didn't supply details as to why. However, since the Wii has far less storage, this may or may not be possible on the Wii...

http://kotaku.com/5391286/netflix-on-ps3-getting-embedded-solution-late-next-year [kotaku.com]

Re:PS3 will go Disc Free in Late 2010 (1)

alen (225700) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751682)

even if there was no exclusive MS deal than it would take some months to code the functionality into the existing firmware, test it, etc. there is also a storage limitation for the firmware and PS3 along with the Wii keep adding new features, channels, etc. Could it be that the Netflix software needs more space than what is currently available so that a disc is the only practical solution?

when the consoles were released there was some forward thinking to add features, but it seems feature creep is outpacing the hardware yet again

Re:PS3 will go Disc Free in Late 2010 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30752336)

Do you know anything about the PS3? Have you not seen that some demos are already hitting 2.5GB (yes, Gig) and install fine, that you can download much bigger movie files from the PSN, and transfer much bigger files via the browser? I have an 16GB m2ts video file on mine, I'm sure other owners have probably exceed this. And as for firmware, Netflix have zero chance of touching that. You think Sony would let another company touch the PS3 firmware?

The Wii is an under-powered piece of shit, getting decent video performance from that and having no real local storage is the main issue. Plus Netflix titles are HD (pretty poor, but beyond Wii's resolution) and have 5.1 surround, which the Wii cannot handle.

Re:PS3 will go Disc Free in Late 2010 (3, Insightful)

marcansoft (727665) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751802)

A player does not take much space, and discs can't add storage to a Wii anyway (for caching or what have you). The Wii's ridiculously small storage and lack of expandability does not affect this particular application.

Re:PS3 will go Disc Free in Late 2010 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30752132)

Indeed, the BBC iPlayer application for the Wii is quite capable of streaming TV in standard def quality that is pretty close to broadcast.

I don't see why the Netflix app would be so much larger. Streaming HD content wouldn't significantly increase the size of the app, if it increased it at all.

Re:PS3 will go Disc Free in Late 2010 (4, Informative)

markus o'farkus (98120) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751910)

Yup. NetFlix dances around the issue (see: http://www.joystiq.com/2009/10/26/netflix-ps3-disc-must-remain-in-system-until-2010-update/ ). But it's pretty obvious this is the reason why.

I don't think firmware QA is the primary reason here. It's an app. There's not much difference between QAing an app loading from local storage vs. an app loading from disc.

Actually at this point, PS3 Netflix streaming is superior to the Xbox solution... you might need to put a disc in, but you don't need to fork over $50/year for an Xbox Live Gold membership.

Seems like a decent tradeoff.

There goes the market (1)

rpunit (966295) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751566)

for roku.. At least my roku can do hd

Re:There goes the market (3, Interesting)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751674)

I've been going back and forth on getting a roku player and this makes it a lot easier to hold off. What I like about this is that it pushes the set top box folks to go ruther to justify their systems. Roku has Pandora, that's nice. If they support playing local files that would help too, and I'd be interested in getting one again.

Re:There goes the market (1)

NewWorldDan (899800) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751882)

The Roku is an excellent little device. It just plain works. The only downsides to it is that it takes up another input on the TV (I've only got 3 to work with) and it's another remote to deal with. The good new about this little annoucement is that I'll be able to move the Roku down to the rec room so I can watch things while I workout.

Re:There goes the market (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30751924)

I have a Roku box and enjoy it greatly. I regularly watch Netflix movies in 720p. To me, the Wii is a non-factor because it's maximum resolution is 480p (even with component video cables).

What would really do it for me is external USB storage and VLC on the Roku. That would be truly awesome. Short of that, a samba client would let me play off of a local file server. That would be cool as well.

Re:There goes the market (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752048)

I agree. Right now I don't have an HD tv - so it's a non-issue for me at the moment. I was going to buy the top end Roku player, as when my current tv dies my situation will change. But this is great for me because it buys me more time to get the capability I wanted without having to buy new hardware now. By the time I get a new TV, there will probably be all kinds of alternatives that don't exist yet. Or I'll have saved enough to put together a very nice multimedia pc.

Re:There goes the market (1)

Killer Orca (1373645) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752540)

Something like this might interest you. http://www.popbox.com/ [popbox.com]

Re:There goes the market (2, Interesting)

slumberheart (1423685) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752344)

I like my Roku--I've got one of the fancy XR's. I got the PS3 disc, but I have yet to bother going and setting it all up because the Roku already does almost everything what I need it to without sounding like every movie was filmed on the deck of an aircraft carrier.
If Roku would deliver on letting me browse all their movies and add them to my queue, I'll never use my PS3 for Netflix.

Unless I'm mistaken... (1)

jj00 (599158) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751660)

It took 3 years for the Wii to get an easy way to watch movies.

Re:Unless I'm mistaken... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30751780)

And yet it still beat the pants off the DVD-and-Netflix-ready XBox360 and the Blu-Ray-and-Netflix-capable PS3, sales-wise. Does this tell you anything about the market for game consoles?

Re:Unless I'm mistaken... (4, Interesting)

theJML (911853) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752036)

You mean for gimmicks and population segments? I mean seriously, the 360 and the PS3 fought over the same group of people. the 360 with HDDVD, the PS3 with BluRay, but both cater to more hardcore gamers and didn't really use any 'new cutting edge user interation' like the Wii did. The Wii-mote, the Wii-Fit all were completely new at the time for a console and drove sales. Coupled with the gamer demographics the Wii aimed at (not hard core gamers so much as kids, older adults, etc...) and the game genre's released for the Wii (proving once again that blood and gore are not the only good things in games by warping back to days of Mario and puzzles), the Wii really didn't have direct competition and that fact drove the adoption rates through the roof.

I highly doubt that the insinuation you make (that people don't want to watch movies on their consoles) was the driving force behind the purchase of the Wii.

Re:Unless I'm mistaken... (1)

Tetsujin (103070) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752456)

I highly doubt that the insinuation you make (that people don't want to watch movies on their consoles) was the driving force behind the purchase of the Wii.

But if a lot of people bought the Wii despite this limitation, that supports the assertion that most people don't care about watching movies on the console...

Personally I haven't wanted to use a game console as a DVD player since my PS2 showed me what a bad DVD player implementation looked like...

Re:Unless I'm mistaken... (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752716)

And yet it still beat the pants off the DVD-and-Netflix-ready XBox360 and the Blu-Ray-and-Netflix-capable PS3, sales-wise. Does this tell you anything about the market for game consoles?

Uh... game consoles should focus on games and not launch at five hundred ninety-nine U.S. dollars?

Re:Unless I'm mistaken... (1)

bipbop (1144919) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752504)

Gosh, it's been twenty years and my Super Nintendo still won't play movies! Now, do I upgrade to a Sony Nintendo or a Microsoft Nintendo, or do I go out and buy a Betamax deck?

How to reserve your disc (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30751752)

Go go http://www.netflix.com/InstantStreamingDisc?device=Wii to reserve a disc.

As many others have already said... (4, Informative)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751756)

...Microsoft has an exclusivity deal with Netflix for the time being [microsoft.com] . Either due to technical or legal reasons, requiring the disc is a way to get around this. Considering Sony has already said the required disc is temporary [destructoid.com] , this implies the exclusivity deal is nearing its end. This also implies any disc required for the Wii would be temporary as well.

Calm down people. Jeebus.

Re:As many others have already said... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30752144)

Yes Microsoft has the exclusivity deal to have it built into the "dashboard" of a console for the time being. I read that PS3 gets around exclusivity agreement by using a Java program within the Blu-Ray disc that calls up the Netflix stream. I'm sure that Wii will do something similar, though it won't be able to use Blu-Ray Java because, clearly, it doesn't have a BR drive.

As for the size of the stream, Netflix won't fully buffer a stream if you pause it. It only goes so far out. I remember once someone said that they had isolated the temporary stream files and they're not more than 5MB or so at any given time, in addition to less than 10MB for the actual player. The Wii's memory is more than enough to make this happen via Dashboard once the MS exclusivity runs out.

Re:As many others have already said... (2, Interesting)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752202)

Actually, the PS3 currently uses BD-Live to stream Netflix [betanews.com] , but other than that I fully agree with what you say.

Looking forward to this, it will mean we will have Netflix streaming on all floors in our townhouse (PCs upstairs, 360/PS3 in the living room, Wii in the basement).

Deaf and Hard of Hearing still snubbed (1, Offtopic)

flerchin (179012) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751766)

Still no captions for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. It's almost as if it they want a class action lawsuit or something. Ten percent of your userbase is no small amount (I would think).

Re:Deaf and Hard of Hearing still snubbed (4, Informative)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751830)

I Googled "why no captions netflix streaming". Here is the very first entry listed in the results:

http://blog.netflix.com/2009/06/closed-captions-and-subtitles.html [netflix.com]

You're welcome :-)

Re:Deaf and Hard of Hearing still snubbed (1)

markus o'farkus (98120) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751946)

That was very polite of you. You could have gone with this:

http://lmgtfy.com/?q=why+no+captions+netflix+streaming

Re:Deaf and Hard of Hearing still snubbed (1, Interesting)

flerchin (179012) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752088)

Gee thanks. It's not like I haven't already researched the issue. If you read that post, it's a bunch of nonsense gobbleygook and FUD that works out to, we don't want to do it.

He says they would have to reencode the entire library with subtitles enabled in order to stream the captions. This is of course BS because the captions are not video data and do not need to be encoded.

He says that they are developing special display technology that would display the text as a separate stream in silverlight. Again FUD, I have written programs that display text in silverlight. It's quite easy, as you would expect.

The data for all of the captions for a movie is usually around 100 KB and is freely available for use on nearly every dvd.

The bottom line is that they do not care to have their programmers waste even 10 minutes on the Deaf community

Re:Deaf and Hard of Hearing still snubbed (3, Insightful)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752296)

Gee thanks. It's not like I haven't already researched the issue.

No need to be sarcastic or rude, I was just trying to help.

If you read that post, it's a bunch of nonsense gobbleygook and FUD that works out to, we don't want to do it.

I did read the post, and that is not at all what it sounds like. It sounds like they have to figure out a way to overlay a secondary stream on top of the video stream. Obviously, you seem think this is easy to accomplish, so why don't you contact them and tell them how to do it?

He says they would have to reencode the entire library with subtitles enabled in order to stream the captions. This is of course BS because the captions are not video data and do not need to be encoded.

That is the exact opposite> of what he says. He says that reencoding the entire library would be time and cost prohibitive, as well as angering a lot of non-hearing-impaired english speakers. As a result, they are working on laying a secondary stream that contains only the subtitles over the video stream. He also says that they looked around for existing tech to do this, and found nothing.

Did you even read it, or did you just skim over it because you are pissed off?

He says that they are developing special display technology that would display the text as a separate stream in silverlight. Again FUD, I have written programs that display text in silverlight. It's quite easy, as you would expect.

As I said, if you already have the answer, why not stop bitching and contact them with the solution so they can implement it faster?

The data for all of the captions for a movie is usually around 100 KB and is freely available for use on nearly every dvd.

See above comments about submitting your idea.

The bottom line is that they do not care to have their programmers waste even 10 minutes on the Deaf community

The bottom line is that unless they release something RIGHT NOW, you are going to be pissed off. Calm down, read and understand what is written, and stop with the knee-jerk reaction.

They are going to give you what you want, and likely at no additional cost to you. Either submit your grand idea to them or stop complaining.

Re:Deaf and Hard of Hearing still snubbed (2, Interesting)

flerchin (179012) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752642)

That is the exact opposite of what he says. He says that reencoding the entire library would be time and cost prohibitive, as well as angering a lot of non-hearing-impaired english speakers. As a result, they are working on laying a secondary stream that contains only the subtitles over the video stream. He also says that they looked around for existing tech to do this, and found nothing.

Did you even read it, or did you just skim over it because you are pissed off?

What he says is FUD. The reason he says that entire thing is to try and confuse people out of the real issue. Of course reencoding the entire library would be cost prohibitive and expensive. Of course doing it that way would annoy the rest of the population. Of course, that is not the way that captions are done, so his entire point is moot. If the captions were encoded along with the video stream, then they would be subject to compression artifacts and buffering issues and all sorts of other problems. No other captioning technology works that way. You simply read the time encoded text file and display the text on the screen at the appropriate time in the movie. It's easy, most everyone does it. He hasn't found the technology available for what he describes because that's not the way it's done. If he doesn't know that, it's because he hasn't researched the issue beyond a 5 minute conversation with someone who has.

In the tech demo SDK for silverlight there is an example for placing text on top of video. I don't need to submit any grand idea to them. Netflix is not an Open Source company, and as such is not looking for code submissions.

Re:Deaf and Hard of Hearing still snubbed (0, Troll)

loafula (1080631) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752578)

Why don't you just learn to hear? Huh?

Re:Deaf and Hard of Hearing still snubbed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30752680)

What?

Re:Deaf and Hard of Hearing still snubbed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30751836)

Still no captions for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. It's almost as if it they want a class action lawsuit or something. Ten percent of your userbase is no small amount (I would think).

So if the Handicapped can't have it, nobody can have it?

Sorry for leaving my PC module at home...

Re:Deaf and Hard of Hearing still snubbed (1)

flerchin (179012) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752068)

It's been three years. I'd say you've had it for a while.

Why the Disk? (0)

gearloos (816828) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751842)

"The thing I can't understand is why the PS3 and Wii have to require a disc?" LOLZ--Let me throw a couple four letter words your way... MPAA, RIAA, SONY, theres also that the disk has DRM and that way you can't give your friend the code to use on his ps3/wii.

Re:Why the Disk? (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751988)

Wrong.

From a previous post of mine: "Microsoft has an exclusivity deal with Netflix for the time being [microsoft.com] . Either due to technical or legal reasons, requiring the disc is a way to get around this. Considering Sony has already said the required disc is temporary [destructoid.com] , this implies the exclusivity deal is nearing its end. This also implies any disc required for the Wii would be temporary as well."

To add to this, it's also possible that since Silverlight is currently used for streaming except to the PS3 [wikipedia.org] , there is a technology issue. Streaming to PS3's currently uses the BD-Live protocol [betanews.com] , hence the need for a disc. Once either the exclusivity deal runs out or they implement a different streaming solution for the PS3, the disc will be no longer needed.

I hate the four-letter words you mentioned as much as the next guy, but they aren't the cause of everything.

This May Be dumb but... (1)

rshol (746340) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751932)

... my Wii does not output in 1080p, will movies streamed by Netflix display in HD? If not, why bother?

Re:This May Be dumb but... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30752008)

Because the average user is still happy with 480p?

Re:This May Be dumb but... (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752040)

I would say because the bulk of what Netflix currently streams is only available in standard-def anyways...the amount of HD content they stream grows on a regular basis, but it is still a small percentage of their overall offerings.

Re:This May Be dumb but... (1)

Reason58 (775044) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752056)

... my Wii does not output in 1080p, will movies streamed by Netflix display in HD? If not, why bother?

The majority of the Netflix streams are 480 (DVD). The best ones top out at 720, and even those require permission from the studio to use.

Re:This May Be dumb but... (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752168)

I'm willing to bet that a significant number of Wiis are not connected to televisions capable of 1080p.

Re:This May Be dumb but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30752262)

And that matters because?

I'm willing to bet that 100% of Wiis cannot output content at 1080p, or even 720p.

Re:This May Be dumb but... (1)

Tetsujin (103070) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752622)

And that matters because?

I'm willing to bet that 100% of Wiis cannot output content at 1080p, or even 720p.

You missed the point.

He was saying that if the Wii is connected to a TV that can't display hi-def, then it doesn't matter if the Wii hardware is incapable of output in hi-def...

My knee-jerk reaction to the news of a Netflix player for Wii was that the display resolution would suck - but then I thought about it for half a second and remembered that Netflix streaming resolution probably isn't any better anyway...

Re:This May Be dumb but... (1)

Idiomatick (976696) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752702)

I'm willing to bet the 10Mb/s or so would also be an issue.

Re:This May Be dumb but... (1)

LtGordon (1421725) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752364)

... my Wii does not output in 1080p, will movies streamed by Netflix display in HD? If not, why bother?

Because, believe it or not, most Wii end users would rather have Netflix streaming in 480p than nothing at all. The vast majority of end users still do most of their at-home movie-watching in 1080p and are ok with that.

Canada? (1)

FrigBot (1459361) | more than 4 years ago | (#30751958)

I wonder if we'll get this in Canada. Probably not. Xbox Live doesn't get Netflix in Canada, but I was hoping this would be a change. Not holding my breath though.

Re:Canada? (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752166)

You may not get Netflix up there, but you DO get Showcase, which means you get to watch the new Pure Pwnage series without having to sulk around the Internet to find a mirror :/

480p (1)

Crock23A (1124275) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752146)

The highest output on the Wii is 480p. It looks great for Wii games but i would imagine most Netflix streaming customers want their stuff in HD.

Re:480p (1)

killmenow (184444) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752366)

Umm, I'd wager the majority of Netflix users are probably still getting regular old DVDs (I am) which typically are 720x480 which is what 480p is. This would be just like putting the DVD in and watching it, only not having to deal with mailing DVDs.

More and more things are coming out on Bluray but the HD catalog still is dwarfed by DVDs.

Re:480p (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752406)

As stated above, most Netflix streaming content is in standard def still. They are adding more HD content on a regular basis, but the amount of HD content is still miniscule compared to the amount of SD content they offer for streaming.

Re:480p (1)

Tetsujin (103070) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752712)

The highest output on the Wii is 480p. It looks great for Wii games but i would imagine most Netflix streaming customers want their stuff in HD.

Well, sure, that's what they want... But I think most of Netflix's streaming encodes are still 480p...

(I don't think 480p looks "great" for Wii games, personally... For video it would probably be alright 'cause you don't get all the aliasing problems you get with polygon graphics...)

Would be nice outside USA (1)

yabos (719499) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752482)

Still waiting for this in Canada and other parts of the world. I think the main problem is the CRTC wanting to control how all content is distributed in Canada.
Netflix: Does not work
Hulu: Does not work

Re:Would be nice outside USA (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752648)

I think the problem with Hulu is about licensing.

Microsoft has an exclusive deal (1)

iamghetto (450099) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752544)

Back in August when this was news:

http://www.crispygamer.com/blogs/post/2009/08/11/NOT-NEWS-Xbox-360s-Netflix-Exclusivity.aspx [crispygamer.com]

The exclusivity was tied to an online delivery service integrated into the console. Netflix gets around this with Wii and PS3 by essentially selling a "Netflix Game" that streams the video from the service.

Press Release (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30752748)

From Netflix: [mediaroom.com]

Movies, TV Episodes Streamed Instantly From Netflix Headed to Nintendo’s Wii Console This Spring
Millions of U.S. Wii Owners Will Have the Opportunity to Access the World’s Largest Online Movie Rental Service
REDMOND, Wash., and LOS GATOS, Calif., Jan. 13, 2010 – Nintendo of America Inc. and Netflix, Inc. [Nasdaq: NFLX] today announced an agreement that will allow Netflix members who are also owners of Nintendo’s Wii home console to instantly watch thousands of movies and TV episodes streamed from Netflix directly to their TVs. Netflix is scheduled to go live on the Wii console this spring in the United States at no additional cost to Netflix members who have a plan starting at $8.99 a month, a Wii console and a broadband Internet connection.

The partnership between the two companies will extend the reach of content streamed from Netflix farther than ever before, thanks to the mainstream popularity of the Wii console. Wii remains the fastest-selling home console in history, and reaches more consumers than any other device that currently supports streaming movies from Netflix. In December 2009, Nintendo sold well in excess of 3 million Wii consoles in the United States. Wii is the top-selling home video game system of this generation, and as such brings the Netflix experience to a broad and diverse mass market.
“Our research shows that 86 percent of all U.S. Wii consoles are located in the living room,” said Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime. “The Wii console is the social hub around which friends and family members gather to play games and have fun. Soon both new and longtime Wii owners will enjoy the benefits of Netflix – and a variety of informational and entertainment options – by being Netflix members and connecting their consoles to the Internet.”

“Our goal is to offer Netflix members as many ways as possible to watch movies and TV episodes streamed from Netflix right to their TVs and to give non-members more and compelling reasons to consider the service,” said Netflix co-founder and CEO Reed Hastings. “Joining forces with Nintendo, which has been so immensely popular with consumers since its introduction, is a very meaningful step in that direction.”

With 11.1 million U.S. subscribers as of Sept. 30, 2009, Netflix continues to expand the ways in which its members can watch movies and TV shows streamed directly to TVs via a range of Netflix-ready devices such as the Wii console. Netflix memberships start as low as $8.99 a month, and members also can receive unlimited DVDs delivered quickly to their homes. At the same time, consumers continue to demonstrate a preference for Wii consoles, which offer tremendous value, whether measured in fun games, shared experiences or the suggested retail price of just $199.99.

To enable their systems to stream content from Netflix, Wii owners will need a Netflix instant-streaming disc for the Wii console, which will be available at no additional cost to Netflix subscribers. The free disc looks and operates the same as a disc-based Wii game, and the entire user experience will feel natural and intuitive to Wii console owners. Netflix members and Wii console owners can now reserve a free instant-streaming disc by going to www.netflix.com/Wii. Once available in the spring, the discs will be delivered for free by first-class mail.

When the instant-streaming disc is inserted into a member’s Wii system, an array of movie and TV choices will be displayed right on their TV screen. These titles will be conveniently organized into a variety of categories based on members’ personal preferences and will include popular genres, new arrivals and members’ individual instant Queues. Using the Wii Remote controller, members will be able to choose a movie or TV episode to watch from their instant Queues or pick one directly from any of the lists. They will also have the ability to read synopses and rate movies, and will have the option of fast-forwarding and rewinding their selection.

Netflix adds another dimension to the Wii console’s diverse online features, which range from downloadable new and classic games in the Wii Shop Channel, to online multiplayer gaming with games like Mario Kart Wii, to video highlights and information about titles for the Wii and Nintendo DS systems via the Nintendo Channel.

About Nintendo
The worldwide pioneer in the creation of interactive entertainment, Nintendo Co., Ltd., of Kyoto, Japan, manufactures and markets hardware and software for its Wii, Nintendo DS and Nintendo DSi systems. Since 1983, when it launched the Nintendo Entertainment System, Nintendo has sold more than 3.2 billion video games and more than 535 million hardware units globally, including the current-generation Wii, Nintendo DS and Nintendo DSi, as well as the Game Boy, Game Boy Advance, Super NES, Nintendo 64 and Nintendo GameCube systems. It has also created industry icons that have become well-known, household names such as Mario, Donkey Kong, Metroid, Zelda and Pokémon. A wholly owned subsidiary, Nintendo of America Inc., based in Redmond, Wash., serves as headquarters for Nintendo’s operations in the Western Hemisphere. For more information about Nintendo, visit the company’s Web site at www.Nintendo.com.

About Netflix, Inc.
Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ: NFLX) is the world’s largest online movie rental service, with more than 11 million subscribers. For only $8.99 a month, Netflix members can instantly watch unlimited movies and TV episodes streamed to their TVs and computers and can receive unlimited DVDs delivered quickly to their homes. There are never any due dates or late fees. Netflix members can exchange DVDs as often as they want using a postage-paid return envelope. Members can choose from a vast selection of DVD titles and a growing library of movies and TV episodes that can be watched instantly. Netflix is partnering with leaders in consumer electronics to bring to market a range of devices that can instantly stream movies and TV episodes from Netflix directly to members’ TVs. These devices currently include Blu-ray disc players and Internet TVs from LG Electronics; Blu-ray disc players from Samsung, Sony and Best Buy’s Insignia brand; the Roku digital video player; Microsoft’s Xbox 360 game console; Sony’s PS3 computer entertainment system; TiVo digital video recorders; and Internet TVs from Sony and, soon, VIZIO.

Wii has difficulty with streaming (1)

slim (1652) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752786)

I don't know whether I've just got one from a bad batch, but my Wii is terrible at streaming Flash video in its browser. Both BBC iPlayer and YouTube stop frequently to buffer.

I guess it could be lack of memory to buffer in. Or it could be a bad WiFi connection -- it's close to the AP and other nearby devices do fine.

I'd be mightily upset if I got this sort of performance on video that I'd paid for.

Aw. (1)

Spyware23 (1260322) | more than 4 years ago | (#30752856)

Cool, even more content restricted to geographical boundaries.

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