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Netflix Gauging Interest In an iPhone App 121

Posted by kdawson
from the coming-to-a-small-screen-near-you dept.
gollum123 writes "A new survey sent out to Netflix subscribers indicates that the iPhone might be the next device that its streaming service rolls out on in the coming months. (The NY Times credits Hacking Netflix for the tip.) According to a tip sent to Hacking Netflix, the subscription video company is now asking users how likely they would be to use an iPhone app to view movies via its online streaming service. According to the survey, an iPhone app would give users all the same functionality that they have when streaming on a PC or other device, including all the same movies and TV shows without advertisements or trailers. If the app is rolled out, the ability to watch on the Apple mobile device would be offered at no additional charge to existing Netflix subscribers. There is good news for AT&T implied in the survey questions: it appears that the app would require users to be connected to a Wi-Fi network."
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Netflix Gauging Interest In an iPhone App

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  • iPad? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by painandgreed (692585) on Tuesday March 02, 2010 @07:39PM (#31337918)
    Screw the iPhone. This would actually make me want an iPad (and was actually the killer app I was expecting to be previewed when the iPad was demonstrated).
    • Agreed. Strongly.
    • by mdwh2 (535323)

      But you can already get a similar sized device, for much cheaper, that already support Netflix. Just not from Apple (i.e., netbooks). Hardly "killer app", by definition.

      Personally for phones, I'd me more interested on them first supporting the major platforms such as Nokia, rather than starting with less than 5% of the market.

      • Personally for phones, I'd me more interested on them first supporting the major platforms such as Nokia

        Netflix operates in the United States, and Nokia is not a major platform in the United States. The three major carriers (Verizon, Sprint, AT&T) don't subsidize Nokia phones (or at least they don't advertise so), nor do they give a discount for bringing your own handset. Even if you live in a T-Mobile covered area, I couldn't find a Nokia product in a Best Buy store either.

        • by jandrese (485)
          What [att.com] are you [t-mobile.com] talking about [verizonwireless.com]?
          • "U.S. carriers carry these phones; therefore, it is worthwhile for a company serving the U.S. to port an application for watching feature films to these phones." I disagree with you reasoning. First, it would fall over if nobody actually has those phones. I'm pretty sure iPhone and iPod Touch have an order of magnitude more market share in the U.S. than Symbian. Second, these people might not have an interest in watching a 90-minute movie on a screen the size of that in an iPod Nano. There's a reason that

      • Well, there is form factor and desirable characteristics. The iPad is half the weight and thickness as most of the netbooks I've looked at. That's important if only using it to watch movies and read while on vacation and I'm wanting to lighten my carry on bag even more. I also think the slate form makes for a batter movie watcher and text reader than the laptop form factor. Especially if wanting to put it on the little shelf of the exercise machine at the gym so I can watch a show during my 40 minute workou
      • Yeah but netbooks suck. You're running cheap crappy hardware with a clunky badly designed dinosaur of an OS. Why the heck would you want to do that when you can have a slick well made product with well designed software actually made for the device for a couple hundred dollars more? A netbook might be fine for a kid if you don't mind worrying about it getting broken, infected, or just plain hard to use but it isn't a product for anybody that wants to get anything done. The iPhone was usable by my daughter
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Joe Tie. (567096)
      I'd still need hulu in addition to netflix. Then add in orb for local files, and I think it'd be an ok media device once it was jailbroken to allow for backgrounding. Still, all in all if I was going for something like that I'd really just rather go with an android based device.
  • Wouldn't this be similar to 'offering a function alreday available' a la iTunes movie rentals? While it would stream where the iTunes won't, it still will directly compete against Apple's iTune movie rentals.
    • by longacre (1090157)
      Yes to some extent, but the Netflix streaming library is extremely limited compared to iTunes and has virtually no new release movies, though that's not to say that couldn't change so you might be right.
    • by tooyoung (853621)
      Apple would trade iTunes movie rentals for iPod Touch/iPhone/iPad sales in a heartbeat. iTunes is certainly popular, but how many users rent the videos? Why not let a separate company worry about the movie rental business, while you sell hardware to their customers?
      • by Kitkoan (1719118)
        With what was mentioned that Apple has a much larger and up to date selection then Netflix (I don't use either one so can't speak for sure), I don't see why they would want to trade their first party solution for a lower grade third party solution.
        • by tooyoung (853621)
          Apple made it clear from the beginning that the iTunes store wasn't about turning a profit in sales of music, it was about selling iPods. iTunes has gone on to sell an enormous amount of music and video, but the rental service doesn't exactly have jaw dropping numbers. You are correct, Apple's new release selection is much better than Netfix (as far as downloads goes), even given that the availability of iTunes rentals is usually a month behind the wider release date for a title. However, in the United S
    • Wouldn't this be similar to 'offering a function alreday available' a la iTunes movie rentals?

      iTunes movie rentals are on-device downloaded content. Netflix would be streaming, just like the Pandora app streams music just fine. Since they allow one I don't see why they would ban the other.

      It would probably eliminate offline caching though, which would be a shame for plane travel. We'll see (if they do it).

      • by Kitkoan (1719118)

        Wouldn't this be similar to 'offering a function alreday available' a la iTunes movie rentals?

        iTunes movie rentals are on-device downloaded content. Netflix would be streaming, just like the Pandora app streams music just fine. Since they allow one I don't see why they would ban the other.

        It would probably eliminate offline caching though, which would be a shame for plane travel. We'll see (if they do it).

        Thing is, Pandora is a radio-style app ( http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/pandora-radio/id284035177?mt=8 [apple.com] ). You can't just select which songs you want, you can only pick a 'station' that suits your tastes. With such randomness and inability to replay a chosen song its more likely to make a sale like traditional radio then anything. Plus it's free so doesn't take away any possible profits. Netflix on the other hand does let people chose which movies exactly and wouldn't be free thus would take money away from

        • by kimvette (919543)

          I'll counter your argument with Rhapsody. You can queue whatever tracks Rhapsody has to offer and stream it on demand. You can store any number of playlists you like. It's a better deal than iTunes purchases if all of your listening is from web-enabled devices (newer A/V receivers, your PC or Mac, your iPhone) and you don't care about audiophile-quality media, in which case you're probably not the target consumer of iTunes anyhow.

    • by vertinox (846076)

      Wouldn't this be similar to 'offering a function alreday available' a la iTunes movie rentals? While it would stream where the iTunes won't, it still will directly compete against Apple's iTune movie rentals.

      Depends...

      On how much Netflix slips Apple under the table.

    • Other people offer Apple-approved streaming video programs for the iPhone, including one by CBS which I believe lets you watch (among other things) the original Star Trek series.

  • by cavehobbit (652751) on Tuesday March 02, 2010 @07:43PM (#31337988)
    Why all the love for a single platform? Is it so hard to write an app that will run on multiple platforms? Rim, WinMobile,, Symbian, Android/Linux.... Why all the hate for other platforms? Most outsell the iPhone
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by brainboyz (114458)

      I can tell you from experience that they all have vastly different SDKs and writing for a mobile platform requires some thought to efficiency so writing an interface class isn't always an option.

    • by guruevi (827432) <<evi> <at> <smokingcube.be>> on Tuesday March 02, 2010 @08:15PM (#31338414) Homepage

      1. Good luck finding an API or IDE that is compatible with all those platforms at once
      2. Good luck finding similar functionality across all OS'es let alone all devices
      3. Good luck finding the same performance across all devices

      Each platform needs to be developed for separately because there's no 'gcc' or 'gtk' or 'qt' that makes anything uniform across all platforms.

      Besides, almost none of the devices out in the market besides some Nokia, Apple and Android devices even have the power and the chips capable to download and play back videos AT ALL. None of the other devices (WinMo, Symbian, ...) even have standard browsers with support for Flash OR HTML5 so web developing is also out of the picture.

      And the iPhone has the biggest marketshare in 1. "smartphones that you can develop for without corporate support ($$$)" or 2. "smartphones with a viable marketplace" (of course success of 2 is because of 1). Also the Maemo, Android and iPhone's are the only phones where the device is not locked down by default by the provider.

      • Too bad. I was hoping there might be an equivalent to C or even perl or Java that could be used. While I develop on mainframes and *nix, I know absolutely nothing about mobile platforms. Obviously.
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by mdwh2 (535323)

          Oh there is - Java runs on just about all phones. The Iphones can't support it though, which is why custom apps have to be especially written for them instead.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Karlt1 (231423)

            Oh there is - Java runs on just about all phones. The Iphones can't support it though, which is why custom apps have to be especially written for them instead.

            Have you actually used Java to develop for multiple phones? The "Write Once Run Anywhere" mantra of Java is definitely not true for mobile platforms. Netflix can't just write a streaming media app in Java and it will run with every J2ME platform -- or even every phone from the same vendor.

            • by mdwh2 (535323)

              I'm not saying it's perfect. But it's still there as a bonus - and it's allowed useful applications such as Google Maps and Opera Mini on every bog standard phones.

              Netflix's Iphone app won't run on the overwhelming vast majority of phones.

      • by mdwh2 (535323)

        And the iPhone has the biggest marketshare in 1. "smartphones that you can develop for without corporate support ($$$)" or 2. "smartphones with a viable marketplace" (of course success of 2 is because of 1).

        Your source? Nokia beat them hands down in the mobile market - as do many other companies. Even adding the Ipod Touch doesn't change things significantly here.

        As for cross-platform - well everyone else supports this technology for cross-platform apps that's been around for 15 years. It's not perfect, but

        • Nokia beat them hands down in the mobile market

          In what country is Nokia beating Apple?

          • by mdwh2 (535323)

            Er, planet Earth? They have about 40% market share, both overall, and even in the high end markets (so this isn't simply a case of only being popular in 3rd world countries with their cheap phones - they're number one at all levels of the market).

            I don't have the data for each country, but if they're not doing so well in one country, that's going to be offset by other countries. Let me ask you - in which countries is Apple number one?

            • Er, planet Earth?

              Netflix doesn't operate throughout "planet Earth". As I understand it, the bulk of Netflix's Watch Instantly business is done in the United States of America.

              I don't have the data for each country, but if they're not doing so well in one country, that's going to be offset by other countries.

              If Netflix is considering whether to develop or not to develop an application for a given platform, it will take into account the platform's market share only among those countries for which the movie studios have sold them a license to transmit their works.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by mswhippingboy (754599)
        Java will run on all platforms except (non-jail broken) iPhones, although even this can be gotten around via some tools (xmlvm, metismo, etc). BTW, java could technically run on the iPhone but Apple won't allow it (for a boatload of BS reasons, when in reality it boils down to greed and customer control). Just another reason to skip the iPhone.
      • by CompMD (522020)

        " None of the other devices (WinMo, Symbian, ...) even have standard browsers with support for Flash OR HTML5 so web developing is also out of the picture."

        BZZZTT.

        Windows Mobile has had Flash on ARM for a while. I would watch Homestar Runner in Pocket IE running on Windows Mobile 5 without any trouble. Also, Windows Mobile devices built for the better part of the last decade will play MP4 or divx avis without any trouble. Example: HTC Apache.

    • by MikeFM (12491)
      I can do iPhone and Android but I can't see bothering with any of those other underpowered devices. I've written apps for WinCE and BREW and a few other platforms and they just sucked to develop for and the resulting apps were less than exciting. I would have liked to write apps for the underappreciated N-Gage QD but Nokia wasn't smart enough to make that a very good option. Next to iPhone/Android though that is still my favorite phone ever. Sure it runs similar software to other phones but it was really o
  • Hah, that will show them!
    I hope they have first gaged the interest, so they know how much of it there is to gauge!

    • umm, delete?

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      I hope they have first gaged the interest

      AT&T has already gagged my interest after dropping all the calls I made from home or work. BTW I live 3 miles NE of Apple's headquarters and worked 2 miles SW of it. And I have been to Apple's headquarters; there is no AT&T reception at all.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by dgatwood (11270)

        Either you're mistaking 3G coverage for total coverage, you're lying, or your phone is massively broken. As in the antenna must be missing entirely. I'm only aware of one dead spot in that general area, and that's a weak spot for a few hundred feet causing a problematic tower changeover on De Anza Blvd just south of Fremont. Even sunk down below the ground on Central, 280, etc. I get completely solid coverage. There are a couple of glitchy spots, mind you (880 just north of 85, 101 somewhere around the

        • Dude, it wasn't just my phone.

          I was working at a company that was very intensely into iPhones and development of iPhone apps, and everyone there had an iPhone and loooved it. But even the fanniest fanboys had to race outside whenever their iPhone rang. There was a spot in the courtyard where AT&T wouldn't drop your call and there was always a crowd of dorks clumped there yakking on their iPhones. This was in fucking Cupertino, one mile south of the 280/85 interchange, 1.4 miles SW of Apple. My wife a
          • by dgatwood (11270)

            To be pedantic, if you're a mile south of that interchange, I'm pretty sure you're well outside Cupertino and well into the unincorporated community of Monta Vista. It might be addressed in Cupertino, but I'm pretty sure it's not within the city limits. IIRC, the Cupertino city limits basically run parallel to 85 about a block south....

            Yes, I do see rather nasty dead spots in both of the places that you described. What this tells me is that AT&T needs to crank up the gain on their cell sites. There'

    • by asylumx (881307)
      Are you thinking of gouge by chance? 'Gauge' is a valid spelling (as is 'Gage', but that just doesn't look right).
  • I was actually searching online the other day for news on this. Whether or not such an app would be approved as the above poster stated is a different matter. I'm not sure how practical it would be either, watching a full length movie would pretty much drain the battery without an external power source. Also, video over 3g would be questionable, waiting for a movie to buffer every 30 seconds would kill the enjoyment.
    • by Comen (321331)

      Not sure about battery life, but I used to watch TV and movies on a Windows Mobile phone years ago with the mobile slingbox app at the time.
      This is no different, it would test your conenction first to send the correct bit rate, over 3G this should not be a issue.

      • From my experience using my iphone, doing anything internet related over an appreciable length of time eats up the battery life, 3g or wifi (wifi kills it pretty fast). Pandora is basically just audio and it uses up a good amount of my battery.
    • by Nikker (749551) on Tuesday March 02, 2010 @08:02PM (#31338232)
      I have to say as an owner of a 3GS battery life watching mp4's is amazing. I've used it on its own watching video in the car and hooked up via media cable (RCA) to my TV and both seem to play 10% battery life / hr viewing. I've watched 2 movies each about 1 1/2 - 2 hrs long and still had 50%+ left. As far as streaming goes I get about 400-600KBs average from Fido/Rogers and it's not very likely you'll be streaming anything over 420i so it shouldn't be that bad with 3G. If you're looking for a higher res video then I'm not sure how it will handle but the mp4 hardware decoding really helps out on this device(can't say the same for other iPhone models though).
    • by Aqualung812 (959532) on Tuesday March 02, 2010 @08:05PM (#31338276)

      video over 3g would be questionable

      Dude, both TFA and the summary point out that it is only for WiFi.

  • by pushing-robot (1037830) on Tuesday March 02, 2010 @07:46PM (#31338028)

    If you're at home, you've got a bigger screen. If you're at work, or a McDonalds/Starbucks/whatever, you probably won't be watching movies. I can see some applications for this, but not being able to use it outside a hotspot certainly hobbles it.

    On the other hand, I'm sure a lot of AT&T customers won't complain, as US cellular bandwidth is already spread thin.

    • If you're at home, you've got a bigger screen.

      No, someone else in the household has a bigger screen. You, on the other hand, have to use the iPod Touch while waiting for someone else to finish.

      • by jedidiah (1196)

        No. You've got a bigger screen on your netbook, your laptop, your desktop or another TV.

        • by tepples (727027)

          You've got a bigger screen on your netbook, your laptop, your desktop

          As I said, the other PCs in the house are being used by other family members. And a netbook's screen isn't any bigger than an iPad's.

          or another TV.

          A TV still needs a video signal source. The idea is that you plug your iPod Touch into the TV's video input.

          • by jedidiah (1196)

            A TV doesn't need to be plugged into your iWhatever.

            You can plug a FAR SUPERIOR media player into your TV. That FAR SUPERIOR media player will also cost far less.

            Better device. Cheaper price. THAT is the value of open standards rather than some lame walled garden that needs excuses made for it.

            • You can plug a FAR SUPERIOR media player into your TV.

              Which each customer would first have to buy.

              That FAR SUPERIOR media player will also cost far less.

              The combination of an iPhone and a FAR SUPERIOR media player does not cost far less than an iPhone alone. Netflix would be able to sell this service to people who already own an iPod Touch or iPhone for other reasons.

              Better device. Cheaper price. THAT is the value of open standards

              Silverlight digital restrictions management is not "open standards". Let me know when one can watch Netflix on Ubuntu, Fedora, or openSUSE.

              rather than some lame walled garden

              Netflix Watch Instantly is available only in the United States. Since WHTI went into effect, the United States i

    • On the other hand, I'm sure a lot of AT&T customers won't complain, as US cellular bandwidth is already spread thin.

      Yes we will, for the reason you mentioned earlier! We want to have our cake and eat it too!

    • If you're at home, you've got a bigger screen.

      But possibly not a means to play Netflix upon it. You can direct a video feed out from an iPhone (or iPod Touch).

      If you're at work, or a McDonalds/Starbucks/whatever, you probably won't be watching movies.

      What about traveling though? Lots of airports have WiFi, that usually costs too much but now there's a compelling reason to pay.

      Or even better, what about when you are at a hotel without a laptop, many people do not want the bulk of a laptop when they travel.

      • by mdwh2 (535323)

        But if people are willing to carry an ipad-sized device, they can already buy a much cheaper netbook to run it on.

        • But if people are willing to carry an ipad-sized device, they can already buy a much cheaper netbook to run it on.

          Not that much cheaper (how many quality netbooks under $500?), heavier, with a far worse LCD (iPad has an IPS panel), and the iPad lasts for 10 hours playing video, can't turn a netbook sideways for reading books...

          Honestly I never saw the appeal of a netbook for travel, but I think the iPad has it just about right as a travel device because it can do a better job than a netbook at many tasks.

    • Any person that got the Slingbox app, will want the Netflix app. And as far as I know, that a lot of people that want mobile media that they can control. Just because you can't find a use, doesn't mean others don't. I'm one of those people that want a Netflix app so that I can watch movies while not a home, or near a BIG screen TV.
    • by nametaken (610866) *

      You're right. I have both an iPhone and an iPod Touch, and I'd be much happier about being able to watch netflix on any kind of linux box. Linux media centers can't stream netflix because there's no silverlight drm (ick). I almost wish they'd just used flash, but I guess the ceo of netflix is on the MS board of directors... so I guess it makes some sense.

  • Am I the only one? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by straponego (521991) on Tuesday March 02, 2010 @07:49PM (#31338058)
    I know that some people really do, apparently, want to watch full length movies on tiny, tiny, tiny devices. I know that eventually these devices will have decent video out or projection capabilities. I get that I'm not the only market, and I'm totally fine with that.

    But what I don't understand is... the media is really putting out the impression that everybody wants to consume TV/movies/books on miniscule screens like the iPhone. Even on an airplane I think that'd get tedious quickly. And I've seen nothing to indicate that the iPhone is competent to deliver video on that scale, even over wifi (if you're on a plane that's serving wireless movies, how busy is that wifi?). Oh well, at least Netflix has the sense to gauge how big the market is.

    Can the iPhone battery even make it through 75 minutes of video + wifi?

    Maybe this is all really for the iPad. That would make more sense.
    • But what I don't understand is... the media is really putting out the impression that everybody wants to consume TV/movies/books on miniscule screens like the iPhone.

      I think it's more that all of a sudden you can put movies on phones, both in terms of hardware and the customer base to justify it, so there's a massive increase in investment there without a matching sudden increase in demand to watch movies on very small screens.

      Can the iPhone battery even make it through 75 minutes of video + wifi?

      It definitely does not. Apple might say otherwise, I have no idea what the official statement of battery life is, but my 3GS less than 6 months old cannot do that on a full battery charge.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by jisatsusha (755173)
        Really? I've had no problem with watching BBC iPlayer on my 3GS for a couple of hours at least, and I've had it since June.
      • by rsborg (111459)

        It definitely does not. Apple might say otherwise, I have no idea what the official statement of battery life is, but my 3GS less than 6 months old cannot do that on a full battery charge.

        You should take yours into the nearest Apple Store. I did, was recommended to re-install the OS, and applications (lost my saved games, but meh), and it greatly improved my 3GS battery... apparently having a 2G->3GS upgraded restore image from 2007 was not being supported well.

    • by shivamib (1034310)
      My thoughts exactly.

      I used to have a Creative Zen Vision which had a pretty decent video quality and the only thing I ever watched was some Heroes episodes on a bus trip. And that was before high-definition.

      Maybe some people don't care about quality, but I like my movies on a 1080p kickass flat screen and a trusty HTPC.

      What we really need is more bandwidth.
    • And I've seen nothing to indicate that the iPhone is competent to deliver video on that scale, even over wifi

      You could spend a couple hours just catching up on movie trailers via Flixster, and there's plenty of long-format content on youtube. Then there's all the video podcasts that can be watched streaming... wait a minute, do you even own an iPhone/iPod touch?

      Maybe this is all really for the iPad. That would make more sense.

      This would be great for the iPad, which we should note is supposed to be backward compatible with iPhone apps.

    • by slinches (1540051)

      I already have a device (Nokia N900) that has an 800x480 display with video output. I can say from experience that it is possible to watch on the small screen as long as you have a stable place to set it (holding it at arms length for 1.5+hrs would get tiring).

      The real advantage is that I can carry about 15 or so movies with me on trips and all I need is a TV w/ RCA inputs to watch them at a reasonable size. The only thing keeping me from having a completely portable movie collection right now is storage

    • by raddan (519638) * on Tuesday March 02, 2010 @09:34PM (#31339228)
      I've converted a variety of media to be played on small screens with the thinking that it would be great for when I have travel-downtime. For me at least, it does get tedious. I just don't enjoy such a small screen. Someone else mentioned an iPad, and for me, that would probably be the tipping point (I'd think about getting one), but a cellphone screen doesn't cut it. Especially since I tend to prefer reading during downtime than watching TV.

      On the airplane wi-fi front, I was on a US Air flight recently, and they had wi-fi onboard. Since it was new, they were running a promotional deal where you get one free flight's worth of wi-fi if you give them your email addy (little do they know I'm an email admin... and have virtually unlimited email addresses!). I was floored at how fast it was, considering that I was, you know, hurtling through the air at 30,000 ft. I transferred files to and from my fileserver, I had an SSH session open, and the latency didn't seem any worse than my connection at home. Impressed... but I probably still wouldn't pay for it (just as I don't pay the extra $60 for 4 more inches of legroom; the $6 Jack Daniels can easily compensate for that). Now, granted, this was all subjective-- I didn't run any speed tests-- but I was expected something like modem-speed, so I was pleasantly surprised.
    • by jedidiah (1196)

      Oh. Nothing distracts you from an 18 hour flight quite as easily as a movie on an undersized screen.

      Of course the plane probably has it's own media server and remarkably better options than your phone.

    • by mcsqueak (1043736)

      I took a bunch of movies with me on my iPhone when I went to Japan last year. It was OK, but not ideal. My flight didn't have seat-back screens in coach, so unless you wanted to watch the crappy movies they picked for you, a phone or laptop was the only choice.

      Actually, the worst part was the viewing angle. I didn't have a stand for the iPhone, and holding at a comfortable angle for 2 hours was not easy. I finally bunched up my thin airline blanket on the seatback tray and used that as a stand, so at least

    • I've been on a number of international flights, and watched 6-7 hours of video on the iPhone before.

      The screen size is a bit small. But if you are in Cattle Class, I prefer it to laptops because there is just no room for normal laptops (that is an area where a netbook would be better). Also, I personally find it annoying when people sitting next to me fire up a big glowing screen, so I think it's a little nicer to keep the distraction for other passengers to a minimum (I also almost never recline my seat,

    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      David Lynch said it best...
      http://www.metacafe.com/watch/3201497/david_lynch_iphone_commercial/

  • by Kenja (541830) on Tuesday March 02, 2010 @07:49PM (#31338060)
    So is NetFlix big enough to avoid having the app pulled when someone realizes you can see non-PG13 films?
    • by longacre (1090157)
      iTunes sells non-PG13 films.
    • So is NetFlix big enough to avoid having the app pulled when someone realizes you can see non-PG13 films?

      They are big enough to a bribe to Apple, yes. Don't know if they feel a need to or if the two will approach each other like that.

  • It'd be useful if the home site detected the browser and redirected to the mobile site. Many probably don't even know about mobile.netflix.com because they don't get redirected. Would be great if sub-queues could be accessed when mobile, but they wanted to kill those anyway... :(
  • No Silverlight! (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Verdatum (1257828) on Tuesday March 02, 2010 @08:03PM (#31338246)

    I should hope that an iPhone app would mean that the streaming would not take place over silverlight. If that's true, there's a much better chance that an app that emulates the protocol can be written for things like Linux (Including Maemo) and Android. If they could just bring back streaming over Flash (or add streaming over HTML 5), then it would be much more trivial to grant support for all these other platforms.

    Ah well, I dream with fingers crossed.

    • I think that's safe to assume. Apple won't let Flash on the device and I really can't see them allowing Silverlight.

    • by adolf (21054)

      There's lots of ways to watch Netflix without Silverlight, and none of them are on a PC. Since an iPhone is also not a PC, I must assume that they'll follow their previous trend of not using Silverlight on embedded and hardware devices.

      • by Verdatum (1257828)
        i suppose i dont know how netflix sends to PS3 and XBox. All I know is I cant make it work on Wii or Linux without virtualization or forwarding video from a Windows box. if im just missing a great workaround, id love to hear about it.
        • by adolf (21054)

          There is no workaround. Playing Netflix movies on a PC is intentionally difficult.

          And I think you might be confused about the reason why: Silverlight isn't used because it's got the best codecs (it doesn't), or because it's popular (it isn't), or because it has the best features (it sucks). They use it because it has good DRM, and this keeps people from ripping the content. Which is important to them, because if ripping streaming Netflix films were automated, good, and easy, they'd certainly have a much

    • by Eil (82413)

      Netflix is heavily pimping the Roku [roku.com] set-top media player, which apparently runs Linux under the hood. It doesn't look like anyone's made much progress in reverse engineering the NetFlix application, but it's proof that there is already a Netflix player for Linux which has no Silverlight dependency.

      • by BillGod (639198)
        I say F the iphone app! I wanna be able to use my linux box to watch netflix. I had to setup a dual boot machine for the sole purpose of netflix. PLEASE netflix users join in the fight to get netflix to support linux. http://www.petitiononline.com/Linflix/ [petitiononline.com]
    • by nametaken (610866) *

      If that were the case I think someone would have already figured out how to emulate the clients in Blu-Ray players, TV's and Roku boxes. But apparently they've locked that delivery mechanism down somehow to prevent portability and clearly have no interest in delivering to linux machines at large. Netflix does have an evil side... customers with linux based media centers (where I'd guess linux is quite popular) are far less important than scratching backs at Microsoft, who desperately want to create a mark

  • Give me streaming support for Netflix on my AppleTV similar to what Xbox 360 currently enjoys and I'd be using it many times more than I would even be considering the iPhone app for the same.
    • by Knetzar (698216)

      The AppleTV is a closed device. You cannot buy apps for it, therefore Netflix would have to work with Apple to support steaming, and Apple makes money by people renting movies on AppleTV, so I doubt they'll help.

  • On AT&T? Not interested.

    On someone else's network? Yeah, maybe. How about an Android app?

    • by mcsqueak (1043736)

      On someone else's network? Yeah, maybe.

      Considering it'll be a wi-fi only app, it'll only be on someone else's network.

  • I'd so much rather be able to watch Netflix stuff via MythTV that it's not even funny. My iphone is for only worth using for 15 minutes or less at a time. After that, the small screen wears on me, and I realize that that may just be me. I guess an iPad would solve that problem, but really, I'd rather watch movies across the room on the tv, rather than on my lap, unable to move my arm, with my spouse looking over my shoulder.

    Hey Netflix! Let us watch stuff on linux!

    • I'd rather watch movies across the room on the tv, rather than on my lap, unable to move my arm, with my spouse looking over my shoulder .

      We see what you did there.

      • by jedidiah (1196)

        "cuddling up with the media player" does have severe limitations.

        It kind of makes sense if you happen to be at sea, or in the air, or on the road in the middle of nowhere.

        At home, not so much.

        Although another streaming option will help make up for the anemic storage space on Apple devices. Of course the network may cut out at any time.

  • by h4rr4r (612664) on Tuesday March 02, 2010 @09:19PM (#31339108)

    There are more linux desktop support than iphone owners, yet we still get no netflix client.

    Or hell they could roll out HD on Mac or Windows.

  • I wish they would focus on *ALL* the desktops FIRST, then worry about phones. What about a Linux compatible Netflix player? I know quite a few people who have waited a very long time and are irritated that absolutely nothing has been done.

    Meanwhile, sign this petition: http://www.petitiononline.com/Linflix/ [petitiononline.com]

    Sure, it might not amount to anything, but you have no right to complain if you haven't at least tried (and this only takes 60 seconds or something).

    • by kimvette (919543)

      I'm sure 3,921 customers will convince netflix to do it. I'd sign the petition except I think that I don't think that petition will help much. What will help is contacting customer service with your account username and tell them you want to see them roll out Linux support. Heck, if they only offer the old flash player to linux users everything will work great!

      • by markdavis (642305)
        You want Linux Netflix but won't sign it because you don't think it will help???? NOT signing the petition will CERTAINLY not help. Sure, call if you like, but signing the petition is a good idea and takes a lot less time... they are not mutually exclusive (and yes, I called them also).
  • There's a nap for that.

Swap read error. You lose your mind.

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