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Disc-Free Netflix Streaming Arrives For the PS3 and Wii

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the explaining-this-to-my-mom-just-got-easier dept.

Movies 188

tkdog writes "Netflix has added Sony's PlayStation 3 and Nintendo's Wii to the list of devices that can stream their catalog's content without the need for a disc. On the Netflix blog, VP Greg Peters adds, 'In addition to removing the need for discs, we've developed a new user interface on both applications that significantly improves the experience. The new applications will allow you to search for content directly from the device and you'll also be able to view an increasing portion of our content library with subtitles or alternate audio tracks.'"

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188 comments

I love Netflix (2, Informative)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942522)

What I love most about Netflix is the ability to watch movies online as well as have them send me DVDs in the mail.

BAG is a FAG (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33942554)

BAG is a FAG

Re:I love Netflix (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33942594)

What I love most about life is that I'm not dead.

Re:I love Netflix (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33944938)

You know the worst part about being a slave? They make you work, but they don't pay you or let you go

Re:I love Netflix (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33942710)

you are definitely living up to your handle

Re:I love Netflix (1)

antdude (79039) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942824)

Netflix is nice, but I wish they require have subscription (another reasons why I don't have a PVR/DVR and prefer to VCRs, computers, etc.) but on demand payments. I don't watch many movies and others. I like RedBox for its 99 cents per day (even for late fees), but its selection is not very big and doesn't stream like Netflix. Amazon's on demand is OK, but limited, costs more, and has time limits unless buying it (still has DRM if keeping it). Mom and Pops, Hollywood Videos, Blockbuster, etc. are dying and costs more.

Re:I love Netflix (1)

Osty (16825) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942830)

I wish they'd stop sending me movies in the mail. I never use them. I've been sitting on the same DVD for several months because of this. Just as soon as they roll out a streaming-only plan, I'm upgrading.

Re:I love Netflix (4, Interesting)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942914)

Be careful what you wish for, because I am in one of the "test markets" for broadband caps, and from talking to my local cableco they pretty much all will go to tiered pricing in the next year and a half. You are looking at 36Gb per month residential, and 75Gb per month business. Of course that doesn't count for THEIR movies or VoIP, so I hope you like PPV.

That is why I'm saying enjoy it while you can, because thanks to our lack of competition and deregulation allowing the big ISP to gobble up all the little ones instead of rolling out new networks to meet demand they are just gonna screw everybody and enjoy ever higher prices. Kinda also puts a stake in that whole "net neutrality" thing, has who gives a shit about whether you have net neutrality or not when you have 36Gb caps? Download your asses off boys and girls, because I do believe we will look back upon this time as a golden age of pre-dialup level suckitude. All bunches like Netflix and Hulu and Youtube are doing is speeding up the duopoly a little. But hell even Verizon is slowing down their FIOS rollout, so it looks like unless you are one of the lucky ones to be able to get FIOS you will be in the boned boat with the rest of us, sorry.

Re:I love Netflix (3, Insightful)

timeOday (582209) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942938)

Netflix has a good foothold. Sony and Microsoft have a direct financial interest in IPTV now. If the Cable companies try to hamstring it there would be immediate anti-trust objections. I doubt ISPs can get the genie back in the bottle.

Re:I love Netflix (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944204)

I don't see how they can scream antitrust with a cap, as long as the major players like Netflix and Google are equally capped. They will just say "We offer more bandwidth past the cap at a higher price but their customers simply don't think their service is worth the extra expense. Is that OUR fault?" and that'll be the end of that. Just as if I don't want to jump from $100 a month to $200 a month by going to business class I can shell out $1.50 a Gb! for more bandwidth, but I sure as hell ain't gonna.

That is why I think that unless Google, MSFT, and the other big players get together and agree to roll out a nationwide FIOS that things will go back to early DSL levels of shit. You can't FORCE the ISPs to give you more bandwidth without raising costs, not without going eminent domain and simply taking them, and if they refuse to take their profits and invest in more lines? You can't force them to stop reaping massive profits while their shit ages and falls down. Nobody invests in infrastructure anymore, thanks to greed and Wall Street with the "damn everything but the quarterly report!" day traders.

That is also why I think they may end up using net neutrality to bite everyone in the ass. I don't see anyone demanding to cap cable TV, or forcing to sell ala carte, and they frankly don't make nearly as much on VoIP thanks to more and more going to cell, so I can see them agreeing to net neutrality and just giving EVERYONE a shitty cap. Then they can say they are being fair as they ain't giving an advantage to their VoIP offerings, while still letting them make HBO and PPV the choice for movies in the next decade. And of course you'll get the *.A.As ALL on the side of the duopoly, because they know with no bandwidth piracy will drop to almost nothing in the USA. Mark my words, thanks to living in a test market I'm getting a glimpse of ALL our futures, and it does indeed suck the big wet titty.

Movie studios make money from Netflix (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944244)

And of course you'll get the *.A.As ALL on the side of the duopoly, because they know with no bandwidth piracy will drop to almost nothing in the USA.

True, without bandwidth, there can't be widespread movie piracy over BitTorrent. But without bandwidth, studios in the MPAA can't earn royalties from Netflix either.

Re:I love Netflix (1)

GreenEnvy22 (1046790) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944856)

I'm surprised to hear that part about your ISP's own offerings not being included in the cap. I believe in Canada, that practice is illegal. If they are going to cap you they can't discriminate their traffic or a competitors.

Re:I love Netflix (1)

damien_kane (519267) | more than 3 years ago | (#33945298)

I'm surprised to hear that part about your ISP's own offerings not being included in the cap. I believe in Canada, that practice is illegal. If they are going to cap you they can't discriminate their traffic or a competitors.

Not True.
I'm on Rogers (until I get switched to TekSavvy).
They charge me past bandwidth caps (to a certain point, which I make sure I go way over so I'm paying less per overcap-gb when all's said and done) and throttle my torrent speeds. Full 10mbit (1mbyte/sec) is easy to get off of an http stream, but my torrents rarely break 200k/s (until a couple weeks ago torrents weren't throttled, and I regularly saw 700-800k/s torrent downloads)

Re:I love Netflix (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33945282)

36Gb might just barely be enough to download a Linux iso. Streaming media isn't going to last very long. Next time get your abbreviations correct.

Re:I love Netflix (1)

LordKronos (470910) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944534)

I wish they'd stop sending me movies in the mail. I never use them. I've been sitting on the same DVD for several months because of this. Just as soon as they roll out a streaming-only plan, I'm upgrading.

What do you mean? I would assume that, since you don't want any movies in the mail, you have no need for having any movies in your shipping queue. I'd also assume that, if your queue is empty and you mail back your movie, they'll have nothing more to send you and thus you will get no DVDs mailed to you. Does this not work? Do they start mailing you random DVD then instead?

On the other hand, if for some odd reason you still want to have movies in your shipping queue but not have them mailed to you (like maybe a reminder for movies you want to see which aren't yet streamable but hopefully will be some day) , then just set up a secondary profile in your account and reassign all of your DVDs (which I assume is only 1) to that account, and leave its shipping queue empty. I've never done that, but I assume they won't send you anything. I have had a secondary account with only one movie in that queue, and when that movie was not currently available, they shipped nothing instead of shipping something from the other account's queue.

If you don't like DVDs then quit ordering them. (1)

clay_shooter (1680300) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944746)

You know they send you DVDs because they're in your request queue, right? Empty your queue and send the disk back. Problem solved!

Re:I love Netflix (1)

chrish (4714) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944966)

You could move to Canada, that's our only Netflix option here. And (AFAIK) the available library of movies is much more limited.

And you get to deal with ISPs that generally have ~60GB/month transfer limits (although you can still get unlimited over cable if you shop around [www.teksavvy] ).

So, uh, YMMV.

Re:I love Netflix (1)

morari (1080535) | more than 3 years ago | (#33945080)

[quote]Just as soon as they roll out a streaming-only plan, I'm upgrading.[/quote]

You mean "downgrading", of course?

The streaming feature is a nice bonus, especially when combined with things like the improved Wii channel or PlayOn. That said, there are certain perks to getting discs in the in the mail that can't be beat. I rip and return my films the very same day, so I generally acquire three films per week for my back catalog. ;)

Re:I love Netflix (1)

PowersOfTen (1915034) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942894)

Netflix is absolutely perfect for me. I love having high definition blu-ray discs available while also having unlimited streaming access to most of their content. I watch far too many TV shows for a pay-per-view system to be worth it, and streaming alone doesn't cut it because the HD quality just isn't there yet. For some movies streaming is okay, but at times I want eye candy. If Netflix in it's current incarnation falls to competition I will be sad indeed. The only downside to Netflix is the limited streaming selection, but it really doesn't bother me that much. I always find something to watch.

Re:I love Netflix (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33945186)

This sounds like a meme...
What I love about cars is that they let me drive places, or not drive places...
What I love about women is that they cook in the kitchen as well as have sex with me...
What I love about Meme's is the ability to be funny at first as well as get old real quick...

The GUI is a little glitchy (2, Informative)

Serenissima (1210562) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942556)

But everything seems to play fine on my PS3. One thing that's awesome is that you can push and hold the left and right and scroll continuously through the lists. Also, it shows 2 horizontal lists instead of one list. Nothing wrong with it, but I'd prefer to be able to choose how it's displayed.

Re:The GUI is a little glitchy (1)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942886)

One thing that's awesome is that you can push and hold the left and right and scroll continuously through the lists.

Speaking as somebody who doesn't own a video game console, and someone who doesn't use netflix, that sounds like any awfully low bar for "awesome".

Isn't being able to hold down a key and scroll continuously pretty much a universally standard UI feature? Hell, even xterm does it...

Re:The GUI is a little glitchy (1)

Serenissima (1210562) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942956)

It was quite irritating when you could NOT do it on the disc version. Now that it is there, by comparison to the previous version, it is SIGNIFICANTLY more awesome. By several degrees.

:D

Re:The GUI is a little glitchy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33942986)

How well can xterm stream 1080p and dolgby digital to you?

That's like saying my sedan with all whell drive lacks a common feature and your truck has always had 4-wheel drive.

Re:The GUI is a little glitchy (1)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 3 years ago | (#33943072)

How does being able to play 1080p video magically impede good UI design? If you are honestly impressed by key-repeat, and not just a trolling fanboi, then all I have to say is, "wow..."

Re:The GUI is a little glitchy (1)

LordKronos (470910) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944734)

Stop trolling him. You know exactly what he means. He's not honestly impressed that they were able to accomplish held-key-scrolling. He's happy that an essential feature that previously didn't exist now exists. The common usage of awesome doesn't literally mean "I'm in awe" these days. It's a way of saying "that's great"

About damn time! (1)

pdragon04 (801577) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942568)

Absolutely love streaming Netflix on my PS3. This just made it even easier for me to be lazy and never need to get off my couch!

double rainbows (1)

jappleng (1805148) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942586)

What exactly does this mean? Does this mean that only a hand-full of content will be streamed or will it be any item in their library? How does the Xbox version compare? Same?

Re:double rainbows (1)

blackraven14250 (902843) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942626)

When I first got the PS3 disc, it was a piece of crap compared to Netflix on the 360. Hopefully, they've improved it substantially.

Re:double rainbows (2, Informative)

Osty (16825) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942816)

When I first got the PS3 disc, it was a piece of crap compared to Netflix on the 360. Hopefully, they've improved it substantially.

Sorry, it's still a piece of crap. It's better than the BD-Live disc implementation, but not by very much. The 360 interface is still much nicer and more usable IMHO. Of course it currently lacks 1080p/DD5.1 support, but the PS3 version doesn't tell you what movies have that anyway so it's not really that useful.

Re:double rainbows (5, Informative)

E IS mC(Square) (721736) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942706)

Summary is missing out the biggest benefits - 1080p streaming (not all, but I guess almost all HD movies will be 1080p now - from 720p of the disk days IIRC), and Dolby Surround 5.1 (compared to Stereo with the disk).

And from what I have read, there will be more content available now (compared to the disk), but of course not all. My guess is that they are adding content every day, but it's nowhere near their full movie library.

Re:double rainbows (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33942774)

whats the bit rate. if its low 1080p isn't going to help much

Re:double rainbows (2, Informative)

afidel (530433) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942856)

Low, which means it will actually hurt perceived resolution because it will be wasting bitrate on pixels that will be blurred in the next frame anyways. It's the same reason I always use joint stereo in LAME, why waste bitrate on stereo difference that the brain can't hear 99% of the time when it can go to improving the mid and high end resolution instead (does not apply to all encoders but I find the LAME JS psychoacustics to be quite good).

Re:double rainbows (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33944470)

First about Joint Stereo:
The conversion from L+R stereo to M+S (aka joint) stereo itself is lossless and reversible. The thing is the latter can be encoded more efficiently if there is high correlation between the L and R channel. If you encode with joint stereo LAME will switch between joint and normal stereo on a per block basis depending on which the encoder thinks will be easier compressible according to the psymodel.

About video:
Higher resolutions are actually more easily compressible than lower ones. Say you have a lossless 1080p source and compress it at a) 1080p with 6 Mbps and b) 720x480 with 1 Mbps. In that case b) will have a lower quality per pixel than a) and downscaling a) would yield superior results. That's assuming that the bitrates chosen aren't ridiculously high for the content, but assuming H.264 and normal content those are low bitrates. The reason for this is that the block transformations are less efficient if the detail is tightly packed so the block is less uniform. That and generally smaller partition sizes have to be used.
At 1080p with say 8 Mbps and a good encoder and codec Netflix could deliver very good quality, especially for newer movies which usually come with less noise and grain and are thus easier compressible. Of course they'll probably use ultrafast encoding settings so quality will suffer, but the same will be true for their lower resolution offerings.

Re:double rainbows (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944642)

Depends on how low you go, BluRays are way above the bandwidth/pixel sweet spot. The sweet spot is around 0.2 bits/pixel which is ~10 Mbit for 1080p24 and ~4.5 Mbit for 720p24. Plus audio of course. So if you have a 5 Mbit line, getting a theoretical 1080p bandwidth-starved signal will actually be worse than 720p. For anyone above 10 Mbit 1080p will likely be an improvement.

Old news for Canada (5, Funny)

adamwpants (858079) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942596)

Canada has had this technology for weeks now!

God, I've always wanted to say that.

Re:Old news for Canada (1)

b0nes (700040) | more than 3 years ago | (#33943030)

no doot aboot it! mod parent up, eh? better than the canadarm

Re:Old news for Canada (1)

Ecuador (740021) | more than 3 years ago | (#33943654)

Well, we're not exactly back in the days of the Avro Arrow...

Re:Old news for Canada (1)

cob666 (656740) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944740)

I live in the States and travel to Canada several times a year for a few weeks each. I was pretty pissed off on my last visit when I wasn't able to watch any of the shows I had in my instant queue because I had a canada ip address. I'm up there now and signed up for a separate account just to watch some of the stuff in my US queue and I'm appalled by how much stuff is NOT available in the great white north. The regional restrictions on content due to licensing issues is just absurd. I honestly feel that if I have a US mailing address as well as a credit card on my account that has a US billing address then i should be able to watch my movies when I'm traveling.

Finally something worth updating PS3? (2, Interesting)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942622)

Well, given I haven't updated my 3.15 PS3, but also have a 3.41 update firmware on my hard drive. And given all updates beyond 3.41 were more of ways to stamp out jailbreaks than actual features (well, there's the crippled 3D Blu-Ray support... but anyone with 3DTVs would probably want a better 3D Blu-Ray player that what the PS3 gives you).

This might be the only real reason to lose the jailbreak...

Anyhow, I wonder what Microsoft has to counter this - their Fall Update is due soon. They need to give Netflix out for free at the minimum, but the 5.1/1080p support is also required. Fun times.

Re:Finally something worth updating PS3? (1)

socsoc (1116769) | more than 3 years ago | (#33943012)

I'm not sure what fw it requires, but it just showed up under videos, then asked for permission to install when I clicked on it. It may have come in a recent fw update, but there's not a new fw update out tonight explicitly for it.

Re:Finally something worth updating PS3? (1)

nschubach (922175) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944392)

Am I the only one that saw it appear for a split second, then disappear? I was on my PS3 Friday and after I shut down Borderlands, I scrolled over to video and could have swore I saw Netflix flash on the screen for a second then it vanished. I had to do a "digital doubletake" and go back to look, but it was gone.

Re:Finally something worth updating PS3? (1)

aztracker1 (702135) | more than 3 years ago | (#33943882)

I'd much rather have a higher bitrate 720p feed than the same at 1080p for what you tend to get over internet streams... upscaling in the device would be better than the relative feed per px stream... a good 3-5Mb stream for 720p is better than the same bitrate for 1080p. Once you clear 5+ Mb it starts to even out and move in favor of 1080p

Microsoft involved in the delay? (1)

orphiuchus (1146483) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942624)

I have to wonder if Microsoft was somehow behind the delay since the xbox has had this for quite some time, its a decent part of the reason an xbox is sitting under my projector instead of a PS3, I didn't want to wait for a disk to watch my movies. What can I say, I'm impatient.

Re:Microsoft involved in the delay? (1)

hanabal (717731) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942698)

its commonly known among most gamers that microsoft did indeed had an agreement with netflix. If MS got their way the disks would never have existed, they were sort of to work around the contract with MS

Disks Expiring (3, Informative)

toleraen (831634) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942632)

Engadget is reporting [engadget.com] that the disks will stop working after 31 days, however it's not clear if that's all disks or just those that downloaded the update.

Anyone know for sure for those of us that are holding out for OtherOS?

Re:Disks Expiring (1)

ErikTheRed (162431) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942688)

Netflix sent me an e-mail indicating that they would no longer support the discs after 31 days.

I won't miss the discs. The upgrade rocks.

Re:Disks Expiring (1)

MichaelKristopeit 63 (1920342) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942770)

i hate the discs... the flimsy sleeve completely spoils any attempt to arrange my media... i own a PS3 and a Wii because i don't want to deal with a company that would inflict such usability issues on USERS. i cringed hatred for microsoft every time i had to deal with either netflix disc. i can't fault netflix for taking the money... but paying to inflict such harm is inexcusable.

Re:Disks Expiring (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33944904)

You.... wait, you hate Microsoft because you value usability and they provide a better Netflix service for users... and it's somehow their fault that Netflix are willing to sell out on exclusivity or that they are too cheap to send out real plastic cases that fit nicely on your shelf? I hope you're being heavily sarcastic, I've seen some totured reasoning for a dislike of MS before, but this pretty much takes the biscuit.

Re:Disks Expiring (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33945020)

What can you say, some people are just idiots. I mean, to complain about a company and a service because of the sleeve the disc comes in? That's pretty ridiculous.

Re:Disks Expiring (1)

slinches (1540051) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942892)

Engadget is reporting [engadget.com] that the disks will stop working after 31 days

I hope that's not true and they'll allow the disks to be used indefinitely. I have a PS3 that's still on firmware 3.15 to keep Other OS and can't access PSN. Looks like a call to Netflix support is in order.

Re:Disks Expiring (1)

slinches (1540051) | more than 3 years ago | (#33943062)

Responding to my own post to confirm that Netflix does plan on dropping support for the disk (on the PS3 at least, I didn't ask about other Blu-ray players).

I'd like to urge anyone else who is in the same situation to call Netflix and request that support be continued for streaming on older PS3 firmware versions. The more people that contact them about this issue, the more justification they will have to make the effort and come up with a solution.

Re:Disks Expiring (1)

Nimey (114278) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944400)

I installed the Netflix channel on my Wii and now it refuses to use the disc version.

Re:Disks Expiring (1)

TheNinjaroach (878876) | more than 3 years ago | (#33945000)

Well my girlfriend tried using the Netflix disc last night and it told her to go download the installable version instead. I didn't see the message, perhaps it could have been skipped, but she left me with the impression the discs are already dead. She also noted the disc told her in big, bold font:

Do Not Return This Disc To Netflix!

Bandwidth Hog (5, Interesting)

Scorch_Mechanic (1879132) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942712)

Losing the disk for the Wii is great, and the search function is something I've pined after for many an evening. However, Netflix has yet to address my biggest concern: Bandwidth usage.

I'd like it if I had more control over how much of my pipes Netflix gets to use. Yes, I know I can diddle my router/modem to fix this, but it needs to be in the interface. Y'see, I play multiplayer FPS games (mostly TF2) during my downtime, which is co-incidentally the same time other people in the house have downtime. They'll load up the Netflix streaming player on their laptops, and my latency will double for thirty seconds. Which wouldn't be so bad, if Netflix didn't continue to hog the entire pipe for three quarters of a second every five seconds after the main load to update its buffer. Mix in the weird lag compensation Valve uses for TF2 and the relatively high latency values I get on my favorite server, and trying to use any strategy but sentry-humping turtling becomes impossible.

Needless to say, this kinda ruins my entertainment. I've come a cease-fire agreement with the other parties in the house about usage periods and times, but the truce remains uneasy.

Re:Bandwidth Hog (4, Informative)

toleraen (831634) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942776)

In the time it took you to write this post you could have googled your router model + set up QOS and had the issue taken care of. I'll take Netflix's dynamic quality-change-based-on-available-bandwidth any day.

Re:Bandwidth Hog (1)

aztracker1 (702135) | more than 3 years ago | (#33943896)

I love my tomato loaded wrt myself... My torrents and other large downloads don't interfere with my browsing and email.

Re:Bandwidth Hog (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33944202)

In the time it took you to write this post you could have googled your router model + set up QOS and had the issue taken care of. I'll take Netflix's dynamic quality-change-based-on-available-bandwidth any day.

Totally agree. Sounds like he wants something that will need to be fiddled with on the Netflix player every single time someone's watching a movie while he's playing a game. OTOH, changing a few QoS values in the router once will resolve the problem for both parties and likely not have any negative impact on either his latency or the Netflix streaming quality.

I'd need to buy a new router for that (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944280)

the time it took you to write this post you could have googled your router model + set up QOS

Google WGR614 QOS or WGR614 custom firmware shows that the stock firmware doesn't support it, and unlike the WGR614L, the WGR614 has only 1 MB of RAM, into which the vast majority of custom firmwares don't fit.

Re:I'd need to buy a new router for that (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33944564)

Google WGR614 QOS or WGR614 custom firmware shows that the stock firmware doesn't support it, and unlike the WGR614L, the WGR614 has only 1 MB of RAM, into which the vast majority of custom firmwares don't fit.

Which makes more sense? Spending 20-50 bucks to get a router that will allow you to do that? Or demanding that every single company that releases a computer program that uses bandwidth provide an interface to allow you to adjust that bandwidth usage? From the OP's post, he apparently has enough knowledge of exactly what programs are utilizing what resources that the change should be pretty simple for him to make. If he refuses to do so, it's purely out of sheer stubbornness.

Re:Bandwidth Hog (2, Interesting)

Michael Kristopeit (1751814) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942792)

it already is in the interface... choose a lower quality setting.

as for limiting bandwidth, that most certainly is a function of the router... any software solution on the other side of the router from the internet would be a less efficient hack.

Re:Bandwidth Hog (1)

MichaelKristopeit 66 (1920336) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942884)

any software solution to lower bandwidth utilization of the player would require the player to request smaller chunks of data, and make requests more often... perceived lag in video games is a result of network latency, not bandwidth... the more numerous requests fighting for attention from the router might actually create more latency and perceived lag for you.

limiting the bandwidth from the router would allow the software to communicate with the content server to much more accurately determine what the optimal solution is.

Re:Bandwidth Hog (1)

paganizer (566360) | more than 3 years ago | (#33943650)

The only problem I had with the Wii netflix was that, about 1/2 the time, my connection just goes flaky as hell, and the buffering system is simply stupid.
I'm not sure what you are saying, but I think the problem here is their attempting to make everything workable by the most idiotic customers; we need advanced setting for those of us with non-standard and/or non-functioning connections.

Re:Bandwidth Hog (1)

SheeEttin (899897) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942950)

Perhaps you could watch something with them? ;)

Re:Bandwidth Hog (1)

noidentity (188756) | more than 3 years ago | (#33943118)

Needless to say, this kinda ruins my entertainment. I've come a cease-fire agreement with the other parties in the house about usage periods and times, but the truce remains uneasy.

And it's stupid to have to do that when a simple technical fix would eliminate the conflict.

Re:Bandwidth Hog (1)

TheNinjaroach (878876) | more than 3 years ago | (#33945018)

My girlfriend watches Netflix all the time while I'm neglecting her for some TF2 action. I've never noticed a problem whatsoever on my 7mbit down, 0.5mbit up cable connection. On the other hand, bit torrent gets shut off with a fury.

Why would anyone want this? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33942718)

I go out of my way to avoid funding the entertainment industry. I don't even watch movies or television anymore, but if I did, I would just rent movies from my local store. This is better because the industry gets less money and the local business has a better chance of surviving. Many of the video stores around me have been closing. It sucks because I can't walk in there and buy a bag of candy anymore.

Re:Why would anyone want this? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33942974)

I'm with you, but we're in the minority. Most people bath in narcissism and wouldn't consider denying themselves anything. It's the reason there's a floating garbage dump in the Pacific, that's twice the size of Texas. They would of course protest this point, if they could understand it. Which of course they can't.

I do watch a few movies; mainly documentaries. I very much enjoyed the John Adams series with Paul Giamatti.

We use Netflix, which has been a surprisingly quality service, aside from the marriage to Microsoft via SilverLight and DRM. Microsoft won't allow Moonlight clients to participate in this charade, and I can only speculate this is but another tactic to stifle Linux. For this very reason, as soon as a viable Netflix competitor arrives on the scene, we will promptly switch. Assuming the competitor is not in bed with MPAA, RIAA, MS, Adobe, Monsanto, Tyson, NAMBLA, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, etcetera.

I suspect most of you will skip this post as possesses a reflective attribute which creates discomfort. From the adjacent comments I can infer that most of you are the typical fat, slovenly, video game addicts that who think vaginas are mythical and can only be found on the internet with the unicorns.

Re:Why would anyone want this? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33943090)

Original poster here. Another reason I don't watch movies or TV is the wealth of user-generated content available. I'm talking about the thousands of mods and maps for games made by the fans. It is a constant stream of entertainment. I don't have to suffer through any advertising or anything like that. I get what I want, when I want it. This is also why I do use Hulu and SouthparkStudios on occasion. Their ads are minimal, and I can watch it on my native operating system without hassle.

I had some extra cash a few months ago, so I purchased a digital TV. Now it sits in my closet gathering dust.

Stability (4, Interesting)

internic (453511) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942734)

On the XBox 360 I'd simply take a client was a bit more stable. Heck, I'd probably even be willing to put in a disk. When I use the Netflix application, trying to fast forward or reverse more than a few seconds leads to probably about a 30% chance of being kicked out of the movie and back to the screen you were on when you selected it. What's more, it seems that most of the time this happens the software loses all record of where you were in the movie.

I'm shocked that the player could have such a basic usability problem on known (locked down) hardware used by so many people. Hardware, I might add, where you have to be signed up for an extra pay service (XBox Live gold) in addition to your Netflix subscription and Internet service just to be able to watch the streaming movies.

Re:Stability (1)

Osty (16825) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942780)

When I use the Netflix application, trying to fast forward or reverse more than a few seconds leads to probably about a 30% chance of being kicked out of the movie and back to the screen you were on when you selected it.

This sounds like network troubles. The only time I've ever seen that happen is when there are network issues either on my side or Netflix's. This is usually accompanied by the inability to stream at more than 2 bars when my connection otherwise can stream multiple Netflix HD streams at once. While it would be nice for the Xbox app to be a little bit more lenient with buffering, I'd much rather it die than sit forever trying to buffer when the network is all screwed up.

Personally, I still find the Xbox interface the most pleasing out of the three. The PS3 interface is just too blocky and ugly, and the Wii app simply has no reason to exist. The only reason I'd even bother to use the PS3 app right now is because they have 1080p and DD5.1 streams while the Xbox doesn't (yet!), but on the other hand there's no UI indicator that a stream supports 1080p or DD5.1 (or even HD at all!).

Re:Stability (1)

MichaelKristopeit 66 (1920336) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942822)

you sound like an idiot... a user interface failing ungracefully due to network troubles IS SOFTWARE TROUBLES. buffer issues do not eliminate the trivial potential to store a time index.

Re:Stability (1)

halltk1983 (855209) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942852)

No reason for the Wii app to exist... except all those millions of homes that only have a Wii, and no PS3 or XBox 360. I mean really, why would NetFlix even bother to serve such a large market, anyways?

Re:Stability (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944446)

No reason for the Wii app to exist... except all those millions of homes that only have a Wii

As I understand it, most homes that have a Wii also have a PC, and virtually all HDTVs have inputs for PC video.

Re:Stability (2, Insightful)

Chibi Merrow (226057) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944524)

And most people still don't have HDTVs. And most HDTVs have input for HDMI, which the default PC doesn't put out audio over, requiring a separate cable and sometimes tricky setup... Never mind that the PC usually isn't in the same room as the family TV.

Stop assuming even a small percentage of the public is even half as tech-savvy as the average slashdotter.

Re:Stability (1)

delinear (991444) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944974)

Or that they even want the hassle when they are. I could rig up my PC to my TV, but I made the conscious choice not to do so for various reasons (being able to separate work time and relaxation time, being able to play games on the PC without hogging the main TV, not wanting an office desk in my living room, having the world's noisiest fan/case combo to name a few). For me it just makes sense to have a subset of my PC's media functionality on a device that's hooked up to my TV (and has a near-zero boot time when I want to watch something). Not to mention I have a console in the living room and one in the bedroom, I wouldn't want to have two PCs set up to do the same thing (note I don't actually use Netflix, but for other similar services this is also a nice, easy, out of the box setup). Sometimes, even as a geek, it's nice to be able to just plug in two cables and have something work.

Re:Stability (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33944894)

Yeah, but most homes don't have their computer in the same room as the TV, and of those that do a lot don't have the required output/input on the computer/tv, and of those that do most don't know that it's even possible, and of those that know, most aren't sure how to set it up.

And for the very select few left who DO have the computer in the room with the TV, DO have the required output/inputs, DO know how to hook it up and DO know how to enable it....most don't have a remote control to control their computer or want to get up and walk to the computer every time they need to pause, rewind, select a new video, etc.

Re:Stability (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944508)

On the XBox 360 I'd simply take a client was a bit more stable. Heck, I'd probably even be willing to put in a disk. When I use the Netflix application, trying to fast forward or reverse more than a few seconds leads to probably about a 30% chance of being kicked out of the movie and back to the screen you were on when you selected it.

And on the PC, trying to seek to another location, even one which is included by the buffer, forces a rebuffer. Anyone notice that the common factor in both these pieces of shit is Microsoft?

Search? (1)

Garble Snarky (715674) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942738)

Why did it take them until now to figure out that people might want to search through the selection of thousands of movies?

Re:Search? (1)

revlayle (964221) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942788)

Search was one the disc-based version too

Re:Search? (1)

SydShamino (547793) | more than 3 years ago | (#33943104)

...shitty search of like 20 movies in each of 10 categories. If you want to actually search for something you have to whip out your PC/laptop/netbook/phone/iPad/iPod Touch, find it, add it to your queue, then switch back to the game console to press play. That was apparently inconvenient.

Re:Search? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33943402)

Nah, there was a full text based search in the PS3 disc.. while the UI wasn't very intuitive.. the search was there. You just didn't care enough to look for it.

Re:Search? (1)

Peter Mork (951443) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944612)

It was inconvenient. So much so, that I've only watched one movie on the Wii (most of the items in my queue aren't available streaming). With this upgrade, I'll probably give Netflix on the Wii another chance.

Re:Search? (1)

CronoCloud (590650) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944874)

There was a search in the PS3 version, it was sort of hidden. Personally, I just used the PS3's web browser.

W00t! Glad I did not toss out the broken Wii (1)

(H)elix1 (231155) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942812)

I was hoping something like this would happen. The CD drive (can I call it a CD-ROM?) failed and was replaced with a new unit. I have not yet had a chance to try replacing the drive... but this means I can add streaming to the TV in the bedroom. While it seems the Wii only plays games when my little one has friends over, it gets used for Netflix on a regular basis.

Re:W00t! Glad I did not toss out the broken Wii (1)

SheeEttin (899897) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942982)

The CD drive (can I call it a CD-ROM?)

No, because it's a DVD-ROM drive. I hear Nintendo continually denies it, but Wii drives can and do read DVDs.
Just install the Homebrew Channel [wiibrew.org] and MPlayer CE [wiibrew.org] , stick in a DVD, and off you go.

Re:W00t! Glad I did not toss out the broken Wii (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944462)

Wii drives can and do read DVDs

Nintendo optical discs have a slightly different sector layout from DVD-ROM. Reading standard DVD-ROM requires a debug mode in the drive's firmware that apparently Nintendo has since removed from newly manufactured consoles.

Re:W00t! Glad I did not toss out the broken Wii (1)

nedlohs (1335013) | more than 3 years ago | (#33945004)

But it's certainly not a CD drive. It's a crippled DVD drive.

I prefer using WiiMC (0, Offtopic)

Dh2000 (71834) | more than 3 years ago | (#33942896)

It might be a little rough around the edges, but I'm limited only by whatever media I have stored on my FTP server, SD Card or USB drive. Being able to view videos from Youtube and listen to Shoutcast streams is pretty nice as well.

http://www.wiimc.org/ [wiimc.org]

Sure, you need to install the Homebrew Channel first, but that's easy enough.

Alternate Audio? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33942912)

Does "alternate audio tracks" include RiffTrax [rifftrax.com] ? Because I would be all over that.

Thanks Apple (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33942918)

I credit Apple with the UI improvements - the tivo, ps3 and wii all worked, just not well. With the new apple tv you can search for a movie and then watch it. Leave it to Steve to point out the obvious.

What about XB360? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33943006)

Yeah it's functional.... but search plx? okthxbai!

Re:What about XB360? (2, Informative)

ashridah (72567) | more than 3 years ago | (#33943296)

The Xbox is getting it in the november update, if i remember the reviews correctly.

Bring back the scroll bars! (Wii version) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33943086)

If there's something I miss transitioning from the disc to an installable app, it's the horizontal scroll bar I could grab with the Wii Remote and quickly scroll through my Instant Queue.

With 100+ entries in my queue, it's a pain-in-the-ass having to hold left/right to get to a movie/show located around the center of the queue. Yes, I know I can "fling" the remote left/right and release the button to "dash" through my queue, but it still doesn't scroll as much as it should, and it's awkward in execution to actually do it in the first place.

Other than that, nice to finally ditch the disc and I have long yearned for the search feature.

The Wii Could Already Search Netflix (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944428)

It does, after all, have a web browser. I use it all the time. You can rather painlessly switch between the Netflix streaming app (for watching movies) and the web browser (for searching for movies to stream).

Tivo to follow Suit? (1)

jchawk (127686) | more than 3 years ago | (#33944942)

I have both a PS3 and a Tivo and I'll definitely be using my PS3 more for streaming now. I'm hoping that someone at Tivo gets a clue and pushes for updates to the Netflix client on their devices. I love my Tivo's but the Netflix client is absolutely terrible.

Tivo if you read slashdot update your damn client!!! :-P

Solved the Wii disc with USBLoaderGX (1)

technik (86834) | more than 3 years ago | (#33945008)

I've already solved the Netflix disc problem (and the scratched disc problem... I have kids)
with HBC and USBLoaderGX. The USBLoaderGX channel made it easy for the rest of
the family.

The question I have, and can't find answered anywhere, is will the Wii disc version
continue to work?

homebrew channel on wii did it (1)

SafeMode (11547) | more than 3 years ago | (#33945034)

Anyone with homebrew setup can install the disc like any game to a usb harddrive and already run disc-less. You can even make main "channels" that directly launch it seamlessly through the homebrew channel like any other game you have installed. I haven't used a disc for any of my wii games since installing the homebrew channel.

Nintendo may be anti-hacking but at least they haven't done anything shady like disable the homebrew channel after it's been installed. That channel is the only reason why my wii gets used (dont own any other game systems or play pc games either).

Size (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33945102)

How big is this update? I'm already saving Rock Band songs on an SD card, having filled my Wii with games and downloads; I don't see how swapping out cards is any more convenient than swapping disks.

This news bothers me. (1)

assertation (1255714) | more than 3 years ago | (#33945184)

This is great news, but it bothers me. As a Linux user I can't use Netflix's streaming content, despite being a paying customer. I've watched many movies and television shows on hulu.com with no problems. There are no technical issues, Netflix just doesn't have a problem with giving the middle finger to some of their paying customers.

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