Netflix to Deliver Movies to Xbox Consoles

Bob Preston
CYBERSPACE — Netflix continues its expansion into the VOD market with the addition of the Xbox to its stable of delivery platforms.

Xbox joins PCs, TiVo boxes and select Samsung Blu-ray players as platforms that all carry the more than 12,000 movies that Netflix offers through its video-on-demand service. The selection includes about 300 HD titles.

Netflix VOD movies are currently not available on Macs.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings said that the convergence of TV and the Internet is a necessary next step for content delivery.

"We need web browsers — Explorer, Firefox, Safari, etc. — to play web on televisions. People tried it 10 years ago without success but that was in the age of low-speed dial-up. Today for the web-on-TV experience to begin we need broadband, high-def screens, and a pointer remote. The video game generation is quite comfortable with using a pointer on the TV."

Hastings also said that Netflix has plans to bring movies to Nintendo's Wii console as soon as it meets certain technical requirements.

But Netflix plans to deliver movies to more than just video-game consoles. The company teamed up with electronics manufacturer to build and distribute a TV-top box that channels standard-definition movies directly to TVs. It costs $99.99 and removes the whole mail-and-return process from the Netflix experience.

To date, Netflix doesn't offer any hardcore adult content, but a simple search for "sex" returns dozens of adult titles, including the documentary "Sex: The Annabel Chong Story," which chronicles Chong's experience doing a large-scale gangbang.

In the adult industry, remains the leading XXX counterpart to Netflix. SugarDVD Content Manager Justin Brand told XBIZ that the company has considered making a box similar to Netflix's.

"We think it's a great idea, but we don't know how it'll resonate with Netflix's customers, or with our customers, for that matter," he said.