Netflix, Blu, HD Downloads, Xbox 360 (don't get the pitchforks and torches yet!)

Discussion in 'Streaming and Digital Media' started by Sam Posten, Nov 20, 2008.

  1. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    For those that do not follow the affairs of the video game consoles it may interest you to know that with yesterdays update to the Xbox 360 they integrated a VERY cool new way for you to take advantage of Netflix, that being instant downloads, many of which are in High Definition.

    You can see which ones are in HD here:
    Is It In HD? Welcome!

    It's a small but growing list.

    Anyway, for your Netflix fee you can now download directly to your PC, Mac or 360 an unlimited number of TV shows and Movies a month.

    I haven't rented a movie since the day I bought a DVD player, I have been an owner and a solid supporter of packaged media since that day. And this got me to bite.

    -For a dollar more a month you can get your Netflix disk rentals in BluRay. There are thousands of BDs i will never buy but still want to see, so even if I only get one disk a month in the mail this is worth it to me, and I suspect I might rotate in as many as 3-4 a month or more.
    -There are thousands of shows and movies I wouldnt even pay to rent but i might spend time on if it were free. Here's an example: I wanted to see that Series Weeds but wouldnt spend the time to go rent it and certainly wouldnt buy it without seeing a few episodes first). Now i can.
    -On these things I can live with lower than BD quality. The video quality that i have seen approaches DVD quality with a bit of stuttering, but I can deal with that for stuff I don't care so much about. I havent watched an HD stream but it has to be even better than the SD.

    New Xbox 360 Experience hands-on and impressions - Engadget
    Xbox Experience now available to all who signed up, Netflix HD streams too - Engadget

    Just something to think about. For those of us who have a 360 already (Plus gold subscriptions) another $100 a year to get unlimited BD rentals and unlimited video on demand with a growing HD library seems like a no brainer. For folks like me who don't already have VOD through their cable company this is doubly so.
    Also, forgot to mention, there is a free trial for new subscribers!
     
  2. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    Video overview:
    Video tour: New Xbox Experience Exposed - Joystiq
    Video tour: New Xbox Experience Exposed (Page 2) - Joystiq
    Video tour: New Xbox Experience Exposed (Page 3) - Joystiq

    HTFers experience the NXE:
    http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htf/...xperience.html

    The Netflix blog has some good info on the update too.
    http://blog.netflix.com/

    There are issues with the DRM and Sony movies, but its not clear what the end result is going to be.
    http://arstechnica.com/journals/thum...60-not-so-fast
     
  3. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    too bad ps3 hasn't done this.
    i've been very dissapointed with the ps3 and movie downloads like this new x-360 deal.
     
  4. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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  5. Gary Seven

    Gary Seven Grand Poo Pah

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    I tried it lat night and it works pretty well. It's not like the original XBox service where you waited for the movie to download. It streams well with no lag. Of course, depending on your service and internet speed, YMMV.
     
  6. justinslot

    justinslot Agent

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    I don't have Gold so I was disappointed when I tried to do the Netflix thing and it said I couldn't. But I hate the idea of paying for Netflix and then paying for Gold just for the novelty of Xbox cinema (since I don't do multiplayer I don't need Gold), so I am stuck until Sony decides the PS3 version will be free.

    And that PlayOn thing is adding Wii support? I hope they warned Nintendo about that, they're pretty stodgy about who does what with their system.
     
  7. TonyD

    TonyD Who do we think I am?
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    looks neat but it's only pc no mac and you
    have to buy it after 14 days to use it.
     
  8. Loregnum

    Loregnum Stunt Coordinator

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    Weeds is an awesome show and worthy of buying the blu-ray discs for. I'm not a drug user or proponent of drug use (although if people want to get high then hey, have fun as long as it doesn't affect me) but the show is hilarious.

    I'd like to get this netflix service but sadly there is no netflix in Canada.
     
  9. ManW_TheUncool

    ManW_TheUncool Producer

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    Weeds was great for the first season or two, but the third season started to look more like Desperate Housewives instead. [​IMG] How's the fourth season so far (for those w/ access to HBO on cable)? I'm reluctant to buy the series unless they get back on track w/ the quality. I'm generally reluctant to buy into long running series because they usually go south (or get very spotty) long before the end, and I hate to have to stop buying before the main plots and subplots get resolved (even as they bring up new storylines and leave you w/ some cliffhangers). [​IMG]

    As for the original topic, I'm still not buying into the idea of streaming video from NetFlix or similar. Of course, that's in large part because my broadband access is nowhere near adequate w/ my cheapy VerizonDSL service (plus I already have a hard enough time catching up w/ all the BD/DVDs I buy and rent). [​IMG]

    _Man_
     
  10. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    I watched the Office Season 1 in HD on Netflix/360 last night and was very satisfied with the quality of the video as a _stream_. Had I been watching a BD I might have been a little more picky but it seemed great for a TV show coming to me bit by bit.

    The issues with 5.1 however have me really concerned. I'd really like to have the original surround mixes on some of the content further down in my queue, will have to see how those work out.
     
  11. Ryan-G

    Ryan-G Supporting Actor

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    Well...

    Microsoft was just at my school not that long ago to encourage us CS Majors to apply. The discussion turned towards X-box, as one would expect on a college campus.

    The statement he made in regards to X-box, was essentially..."There's a war for the living room. You all know that. We intend to win."

    Microsoft's goal is to become a media provider. They want to serve you up someone else's media and get a nice fee for being the service, whether it's VoD, or Netflix, or Live's games. They're looking to be the platform and pull in fees.

    They'll get rid of the tier, or morph it, when it becomes inconvient and a roadblock to growth. Kinda like they did with Gold req's for online play with the PC version of Live.

    I expect, IMO, that they'll morph it. I expect that MS will change Gold so it'll offer Live, X downloads/month of VoD(Tiered), and access to the Office Suite for Y dollars/month.

    Why? It makes sense. Office is a one-time buy, most people will buy it once and never upgrade. Live's features aren't all that compelling. MS has wanted a way to keep people paying for Office for years, Live alone isn't sufficient to be hugely profitable(Hugely meaning Microsoft's verison of Huge).

    But put it all in with VoD? Starts to become an attractive package. I mean honestly, if Microsoft offered unlimited downloads of all media for $300 or even $500 a year, who wouldn't buy in? It'd still be less than half the cost of cable. Let people Al-a-carte and charge a couple bucks per episode/game/movie, and those who don't watch much will still be good. Local news casts for $20 a year? All of your cities games for $50? You'd still be so far ahead of cable.

    Microsoft has alot of room to work with this, and they will. I'd expect to see their fees and features morph and become more flexible as they get this further developed.

    IMO they're doing a pretty good job of developing a killer app, if they can find ways to make this cheaper than the alternatives, they'll take over.

    I'm actually pretty excited about this, because I think that Cable is ridiculous. I watch 24, Lost, Heroes, Supernatural, and the Penguins. I'm not getting the $100+ it costs me for cable. If MS can get the price down to DVD pricing for TV, I'd drop cable in a second. MS could probably save me hundreds of dollars a year.

    Of course, this all assumes they get over their love affair with ridiculously expensive hard drives. I can buy 1 terrabyte for the price of their 120(?) gigabyte drive. IMO this is the single biggest thing holding them back right now.
     
  12. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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  13. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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  14. Andre Bijelic

    Andre Bijelic Stunt Coordinator

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    There's no Netflix per se, but Zip.ca is its Canadian equivalent.
     

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