Friday, April 20, 2012

Celebrate Earth Day with Netflix

I'm Ian Bricke, Director of Content Acquisition here at Netflix.  Join us in celebrating the 42nd anniversary of Earth Day on April 22nd!  Whether you’re a hardcore treehugger or a laidback household recycler, Netflix has a great offering of green movies for every taste, all available to watch instantly.  If you’re into hard-hitting environmental documentaries, try Forks Over Knives, The Last Mountain, or the 2012 Academy Award-nominated If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front.  For a more playful look at green living, check out Revenge of the Electric Car.  Travel the world in pursuit of inspiring stories of renewal, creativity, and adventure with Waste Land or 180°South.  Celebrate the sheer beauty of our natural world with the family-friendly Turtle: The Incredible Journey and March of the Penguins.   And if documentaries aren’t your thing, you could do worse than a one-of-a-kind Earth Day double feature of Free Willy and Chinatown(Let's be honest, Chinatown is not only one of the all-time-best Jack Nicholson movies, but also a pull-no-punches look at water rights.)  Happy Earth Day!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Play Ball!

"Play Ball!" Those are the words said by millions of baseball fans around the country as they cheer on their favorite players and teams each spring and summer.    For the 30 Major League teams and their fans, springtime, and Opening Day, brings new hope of a championship season.  It is also around this time that we celebrate a true baseball hero, Jackie Robinson, the first African-American professional athlete to break the color barrier in professional sports.  Mr. Robinson joined the then Brooklyn Dodgers on April 15, 1947, ending nearly 80 years of segregation in baseball.   He would go on to win the Rookie of the Year Award, a National League MVP award, play in six World Series, and six All-Star games over his illustrious 10 year career that, at times, was plagued with racism.  

On April 15th of each year, Jackie Robinson Day, Major League Baseball now pauses to recognize the many contributions of this extraordinary man and athlete.  It is in his memory that some of today’s greatest players tell of their trials and triumphs in the documentary, Harvard Park.  Baseball legends Darryl Strawberry and Eric Davis headline an all-star cast in this moving film which chronicles their off season training regime in historic South Central Los Angeles.   Nicknamed “The Program,” Strawberry and Davis unofficially, but systematically, put together a workout and training routine that drew African-American players from the majors and the minors to an (admittedly) run down field in a dangerous part of town.  And, although “The Program” attracted superstar players like Kenny Williams, David Farmer, Barry Larkin, Dejon Watson, Royce Clayton and Lenny Harris, to name just a few, they never left the neighborhood where it first began because they knew their presence at Harvard Park signified something greater to the neighborhood. 
For over 10 years, these athletes would come together and share their talent and time to help one another become better players and, in the process, set a profound example of leadership and community, exemplifying Jackie Robinson’s famous quote, “A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.” 
I’m Pauline Fischer, Vice President of Content Acquisition and in honor of Jackie Robinson Day we are happy to offer Harvard Park to instantly watch on Netflix.   I truly hope you enjoy the film!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Updated Netflix App for Windows Phone

Today we released an updated version of our App for Windows Phone. The new version includes several enhancements to improve your experience when enjoying Netflix on your Windows Phone, but we’re especially excited to expand Windows Phone support to Latin America, UK and Ireland.

Netflix on Windows Phone has always been popular with our members in US and Canada, where it has been available since November, 2010. The expanded support will allow Netflix members anywhere Netflix is available to enjoy TV shows and movies on a broader selection of smartphones.

In addition to support for more regions, members can now enjoy Netflix in their local language and choose alternate audio and subtitles. If you’ve used Netflix on Windows Phone before, you should notice better performance with the updated app.

Netflix members can go to the Windows Phone Marketplace, download the Netflix App. I hope you enjoy Netflix on your Windows Phone!


Roma De is director of product management at Netflix.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Today’s Netflix Update for Xbox 360

If you’re one of our many members who instantly watch TV shows and movies streaming from Netflix with an Xbox 360, you may have noticed an update to the Netflix application on your Xbox today. The update includes a number of new features and enhancements to the Netflix experience on Xbox:

  • Skip Forward/Skip Back functions during play allow you to move through movies quickly and move between TV episodes easily
  • Zoom function during play lets you enlarge letterboxed video content to full screen
  • Better color contrast, making colors more vivid and black more pure.
  • If you’re a member in Canada, Latin America, the UK or Ireland, we have also created more opportunities to share TV shows and movies in the connected world and for you to discover more great stuff to watch through your friends. Members that have connected with their Facebook friends on Netflix can now see what their friends have watched and rated on Netflix.

In addition, we have made it easier to decide what you want to share with your Facebook friends when enjoying Netflix on your Xbox:

  • Single sign on with cloud profile makes it easier to enjoy Netflix on another Xbox 360, wherever you are. For example when visiting a friend’s house you can use their Xbox 360 with Netflix after signing on with your Xbox LIVE credentials
How do you get the new application?
If you already use Netflix on your Xbox 360, you will automatically receive the new Netflix features the next time you access the application and download the update - If you have not previously downloaded the Netflix application on Xbox 360, you can simply download it from the Xbox LIVE Apps Marketplace

A few notes:
  • An Xbox LIVE Gold membership, Netflix unlimited streaming membership and a high-speed Internet connection are required to stream TV Shows and movies from Netflix on Xbox 360 
  • Kinect for Xbox 360 is required to use voice and gesture control 
  • The Netflix social features are only available to Netflix members outside the United States at this time

Chris Jaffe is Director of Product Innovation at Netflix where he leads our work on Xbox, PS3, and Wii

Friday, April 6, 2012

Upcoming Changes to Vacation Hold

Vacation hold, a feature used by some members in the U.S. and Canada, will be changing.

Starting in May, you'll still be able to cancel your membership and restart within three months – we’ll still maintain your address, billing information and ratings, and members in the U.S. will still have their Queue intact. The change is that instead of Netflix automatically restarting your membership, your membership will now restart when you tell us. There will be no delay or additional charges. If you're currently on vacation hold, your membership will restart automatically on the date you requested.

 Lesley Grossblatt, Senior Manager, Product Innovation