Last week, we signed up for Netflix .
Yep, even with such posts as “Why do people sign up for Netflix? ” peppering the archives, we at the BFP household signed up for the $8.99 a month plan that lets us borrow one movie at a time, unlimited movies a month, plus unlimited streaming video on demand.
Online Video: So-So
Part of me wishes we read reviews of the video online portion of the service first because that was one of the driving factors in signing up for Netflix. It turns out that the selection consists of television shows and older movies. It doesn’t include many recent films, which was a real let down, but it does include current television shows so that is a mitigating factor. The reason why the online video was so appealing was because it was now more closely integrated with our XBox 360 in the winter update and the XBox is our main media player in the basement.
However, despite the limited selection, we’re sticking with the subscription past the two week trial just to see how often we use it. We might even analyze our Netflix usage in a few months  to see if it’s money well spent.
Setting Up XBox for Netflix
The setup was remarkably simple, simply navigate to the Video Marketplace menu and slide over to the Netflix box (mine was the second one). From there, download and install the Netflix application. It’ll kick you back to the menu after you’re done, just go back to the box and select it. Then you’ll be asked whether you have an account already or whether you want to activate a free trial (2 weeks), I selected that I already had an account. The Xbox will display a super secret code that you then enter on this activation page . It thinks about it for a few minutes (“Activating”) and then you’re ready to go.
You can watch any movie available for your PC on your XBox. Unfortunately, this only includes older titles. You won’t be able to watch any newer movies instantly, which was originally our intent. It was a little unreasonable for us to expect that but we didn’t know, but the selection of movies available via the web is still pretty good. They tend to be older movies but by signing up, we’ve essentially made Netflix our database for movies at only $8.99 a month.
We’ll give it a shot and see how it goes! First DVD, The Dark Knight  (my wife hasn’t seen it yet), comes in the mail today.
(Photo by brymo )