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Netflix will launch a new video game service within the next year

Published Jul 15th, 2021 7:31AM EDT
Netflix Games
Image: JorgeEduardo/Adobe

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Netflix is the leading video streaming app out there for the moment, thanks to a particular set of circumstances. Netflix was the first to launch a streaming service that was readily available on most devices. And Netflix was the first to bring its service to nearly every market on the planet. Netflix also made a variety of original shows that fans loved. And the collection of original content has increased steadily in the past few years. But Netflix also has to face more competition from strong players in the industry. That’s why it’s not surprising to hear that Netflix wants to give you access to games on top of movies and TV shows.

A report in mid-May said that Netflix is interested in gaming, with a game streaming service in the works. Netflix never confirmed the rumors about its Netflix games service. But the company did say that it wants to offer consumers more interactive entertainment. Netflix has launched some original shows that let the viewer decide where the story goes next, so that was an easy save for the PR department.

But there’s increasing talk about the new Netflix service as the streamer continues to prepare for an eventual launch.

When will Netflix Games launch?

It’s Bloomberg out with a new story that says Netflix hired an experienced executive to lead its video games effort.

Mike Verdu, a former Facebook vice president in charge of working with game developers for Oculus, is joining Netflix. He’ll be the new vice president of game development, reporting for Netflix Chief Operating Officer Greg Peters. Verdu also worked for Electronic Arts, where he was involved in the development of several popular titles, including Sims, Plants vs. Zombies, and Star Wars. Before that, Verdu was Zynga’s Chief Creative Officer.

The company is yet to confirm anything, so there’s no official release date for the Netflix games service. The report says that Netflix wants to offer video games on the main app within the next year.

No new app?

The games will reportedly appear in the main Netflix app, so they won’t require a specialized app. They’ll appear next to movies and TV shows, with Bloomberg saying that Netflix will do for games what it did for documentaries and stand-up special.

The games won’t cost extra, the report says, which should be great news for consumers. However, Netflix raises the subscription price regularly. Bringing games under its streaming platform could help it plan additional price hikes in the coming years.

The report also notes that the Netflix app already contains evidence that suggests the arrival of games is imminent. Files hidden “deep” within the app are indicative of that, according to an iOS developer.

Development for Netflix games will start in the coming months, with the streamer already advertising game-development positions on its website.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.