Netflix, now in the UK

Today saw the release of Netflix in the UK.

Just download this free app and you can instantly watch TV shows & movies streaming from Netflix.

I have been somewhat interested in Netflix after listening to rave reviews about the service in the US on podcasts such as TWiT. I quite like the idea of “all you can eat” subscription video service, the key though is the content and how often it is refreshed.

I wrote over three years ago now how I subscribed to the GO!VIEW service for the PSP from Sony and Sky. This was a video subscription service (downloading for the PSP mind you, not streaming) however I only subscribed for two months, not for any technical reason, purely content, once I had watched what I wanted to see, and there was no refresh of content within those two months, I couldn’t see the point of continuing my subscription. Now of course GO!VIEW is defunct and no longer available.

When we got our new TV, which has internet services built in, I did consider getting a Lovefilm subscription, but wasn’t that impressed with the content back then.

With the Netflix announcement I have been looking at the content available, and importantly how easy it will be to access. Alas my TV does not have Netflix, though it may come in with an update later. I thought my LG Blu-Ray player would be a possibility, but alas no luck there either. Good news however the PS3 does have Netflix capability and there is an app for the iPad and the iPhone. I suspect that we may see a future update to the Apple TV that gives us Netflix on that box.

So apart from the content considerations, I am also concerned about the impact it will have on my broadband cap, I have a bandwidth limit on my fibre connection and in recent months we have got quite close to the limit. My concern will be if I start using Netflix I will (obviously) be using more bandwidth and if I have to increase my cap that will cost me more money. Not sure if I will watch Netflix instead of iPlayer, that may be a possibility so may not have such an impact after all.

So what about content? Well that has to be a serious consideration and you don’t subscribe to Netflix if you want the most recent film and TV releases. For example it only has the first four seasons of the new Doctor Who, so no Matt Smith (though some may think that is a blessing). There are a few 2010 films, but most are much older.

So not sure yet, but hey you can have a month’s free trial and that may well be the way to go.

4 Replies to “Netflix, now in the UK”

  1. Took out the free month’s trial option via Facebook and fired up the Apple TV – the Netflix app appears under the ‘Internet’ menu. Works very much like the iTunes rentals on the Apple TV except of course you are paying £5.99 per month for “all you can eat” as opposed to £4.49 per film. Content was patchy, particularly in the film department, although it seemed to have a reasonable range of documentaries and foreign films. A good choice of US TV series – I watched the pilot episode of Breaking Bad and was disappointed with the quality, every 10 mins or so it stopped and threw me out, presumably a buffering issue? Its not my bandwidth as iTunes rentals stream just fine. Another issue was quality – I got standard definition and saw no way of choosing an HD alternative? Overall, meh, I’ll see how the free month goes. Nice to have the iPad app as well I suppose.

  2. I wonder if the streaming problems were because there were lots of people streaming and it will settle down in a few weeks.

  3. Netflix is best if you have any interest in TV shows. Movies… not the best yet. I subscribe here in the US and use it regularly as background when working. 5 years from now, Amazon or Apple will dominate this market, but for now Netflix streaming is the best $8.00 a month you can spend.

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