Netflix announced two new unlimited DVD plans on Tuesday, including a $7.99 option for one DVD at a time and an $11.99 option that allows users to rent two DVDs at a time. The company also said that it will discontinue its current $9.99 monthly option that provides access to unlimited DVD rentals and unlimited instant streaming each month. Instead, the movie rental service will charge users $7.99 a month for unlimited streaming and a minimum of $7.99 per month for unlimited DVDs (with one rented out at a time at that rate). Essentially, that means users with the current $9.99 offering will instead have to cough up $15.98 per month in order to maintain their current subscription plan. “Reflecting our confidence that DVDs by mail is a long-term business for us, we are also establishing a separate and distinct management team solely focused on DVDs by mail, led by Andy Rendich, our Chief Service and Operations Officer and an 11 year veteran of Netflix,” the company said in a blog post. Netflix’s current plans will expire in September, and users will need to switch to a new plan by that time. More →
Netflix announced on Monday that it has reached a multi-year agreement with Miramax to offer several hundred Miramax films, including hits like Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill, and Good Will Hunting, through its instant streaming service. “From day one, we’ve been very clear about the importance of digital and our desire to respond to the significant pent-up demand for our films — delivering to consumers whenever and wherever they want,” Miramax CEO Mike Lang said. Netflix did not disclose the financial terms of its deal with Miramax. Netflix subscribers looking to get in on the action will be able to access the new content — on a rotating basis — beginning in June. Hit the jump for the full press release. More →
If you’re a Canadian resident struggling with the newly imposed broadband data quotas, you’re definitely going to appreciate this. Netflix has announced a new set of tools available to Canadian users that can curb the amount of data used while streaming movies by up to 66%, “with minimal impact to video quality.”
“In the past, viewing 30 hours of Netflix could consume as much as 70 GBytes, if it was all in HD, and typically about 30 GBytes,” writes Neil Hunt, Chief Product Officer at Netflix. “If any member wants to change back to higher data usage and video quality, they can do so on the Manage Video Quality page, found under Your Account.”
Using the new settings, that same 30 hours of video can be viewed with just 9GB of data flying over the wire. If you’re interested to know exactly how Netflix has managed to slice and dice its data usage, there is some technical information waiting for you after the break. More →
In the wake of Tuesday’s Netflix Instant outage, the company has issued a mea culpa and service credit to affected users. “We are sorry for the inconvenience this may have caused,” reads an email from Netflix. “If you attempted and were unable to instantly watch TV episodes or movies yesterday, click on this account specific link in the next 7 days to apply your 3% credit to your next billing statement for your Watch Instantly Unlimited plan.” The note does not explain why the service when down, rather it references “technical issues.” The full text of the letter is after the break.
Our inbox is littered with tips from frustrated Netflix users attempting to stream videos from the site’s service. Reports state that Netflix’s Instant service, in all its forms, has been down for the last several hours. If you were planning to have a nice evening in with your main-squeeze and a slightly dated movie, this certainly would put a damper on those plans. Anyone out there experiencing this?
If you’ve got a network connected Wii and a Netflix account with streaming capabilities, today is your lucky day. Via a press release, Nintendo and Netflix announced that U.S. and Canadian subscribers will be able to download and install software directly to their Wii consoles to allow Instant Queue streaming. Previously, the Wii console required a Netflix CD to be inserted in the disc drive for Instant Queue access. The software is available for free from the Wii Shop Channel on your console. The full press release is after the break. More →
Fresh off of their deal last month with Epix, Netflix has announced a new, long-term agreement with Nu Image/Millennium Films that will bring more first-run content to its streaming library. As the press release explains, “Nu Image and Millennium Films are best known for big budget action/thriller movies including: ‘The Expendables,’ ‘John Rambo,’ ‘Brooklyn’s Finest,’ ‘Righteous Kill,’ ’16 Blocks’ and ‘Black Dahlia.'” The movies will be available to Netflix users during the “pay TV window” and will begin in to show up in early 2011. We’ve got the full press release after the break. More →
Today, at Google’s search event, the Mountain View company announced a new search service titled Google Instant. Google details that over one billion users use the company’s search service each week. Those billions and billions of users, on average, take nine seconds to type a search query and an additional fifteen seconds selecting the appropriate returned result. Google is banking on reducing both of these times by displaying predictive search results as a user types their search query. For example, “the gi” into the search bar will result in instant results for the novel “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.” The user will also be presented with several alternative query suggestions for the original string “the gi” (much in the same way search suggestions are presented now). The feature is rolling out today in the U.S. for all users of Chrome, FireFox, Internet Explorer 8, and Safari. Google Instant will begin to appear internationally in the U.K., France, Italy, Germany, and Spain beginning next week.
UPDATE: Google demoed Google Instant running on Android — an original Motorola DROID to be exact — and said it would come to the platform “later this fall.” More →
It looks like Netflix has quietly added iPhone and iPod Touch support to their popular Netflix mobile application that iPad users are already enjoying. The new application allows the streaming of movies, that are eligible to be added to your “Instant Queue,” over both 3G and Wi-Fi. The app is available for download now via the iTunes App Store. The new, more inclusive Netflix application is more evidence that the movie rental giant is taking mobile very, very seriously.