Netflix Updating, Unifying Streaming Interface Across Devices
Netflix has become one of the most ubiquitous services around—just about everyone you know subscribes to its streaming service, so it’s easy to talk about what’s new and good with your friends. But the question of how they interface with that service is a lot trickier, and depending on what devices they’ve got hooked up to their TVs, it might be pretty different from person to person—making browsing less than ideal overall. The good news is that it seems Netflix is aware of its shortcomings in that arena, and has a streamlined and unified interface coming to the majority of devices starting today.
Take a look at this video that shows off the new interface’s layout and features:
A press release, published today, offers up details about what the new interface will provide to viewers. Apparently the new design is geared just for today’s current crop of televisions, rather than the comparatively dinky computer screens that Netflix streaming first debuted on. It’ll offer up “multiple cinematic images for each title along with a new, snappy description and more personalized detail on why Netflix suggests it.” Moreover, the video above says that it’ll provide details on what the contacts in your social networks (or “friends,” as they might be called) have watched. Phew! I was getting tired of actually talking to people I knew about what they watched. Now Netflix will let me stay home and avoid talking to anyone, ever, for the rest of my life.
Kidding aside, the update sounds pretty good. I’ve been switching between the Netflix interface on the Xbox 360 and that of the PlayStation 3 for quite a while, with a smattering here and there of the Wii U and the PC. None of them have been particularly great, each with a strength or a weakness here in terms of browsing individual episodes, or catching my eye for good stuff to watch. According to the press release, the update will be coming to PS3, this week’s forthcoming PS4, Xbox 360, Roku 3, “newer Smart TVs and recent Blu-ray players,” while more devices and older Rokus will get the update later on.
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