Netflix officially launches in the UK


Today Netflix officially launched in the UK after setting up a number of content deals over the last few months. Priced at £5.99 per month with a month free trial (Credit Card needed to setup) there is access to what looks like a ton of content and you can watch the services on a PS3, Wii,Xbox 360, PC, Mac,iPad or Apple TV. Lovefilm have an established streaming service in the UK and charge £4.99 per month for unlimited streaming so its going to be interesting to see how well Netflix will do in the UK, I suspect pretty well.

Anybody thinking of subscribing?

Details from the Netflix blog:

Click-to-Watch TV Programmes and Films Over the Internet

Netflix is available now, and anyone can get a one month free trial: click-to-watch TV programmes and films streamed instantly over the Internet to your smart TV, game console, computer, tablet, or mobile device. After the free trial, it costs just £5.99 or €6.99. Our catalog is full of complete TV programmes such as The Only Way is Essex, Prison Break, and Damages (watch from the pilot episode all the way through the last complete season) and great films such as 3:10 to Yuma, Blitz and The English Patient, with new content added continuously.

Streaming to TVs, Computers, Tablets, and Mobiles

We have spent the last four years building and refining streaming players for the major game consoles, smart TVs, Blu-ray players, tablets, and mobile phones, as well as Mac and PC-based computers. We have honed and refined the apps based upon our experience in the Canadian, US, and Latin American markets. The current versions have some cool streaming technology that starts streaming the video instantly and quickly scales up to high definition with surround sound when your broadband connection supports it. If you don’t have a game console or smart TV, there are nifty smart TV adaptor products on the market that convert a regular television to an Internet-connected television starting at around £50.



About the author Ian Dixon:
Ian Dixon is a Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional), founder of tech site and producer of the weekly The Digital Lifestyle Show podcast. Ian has been writing and talking about Windows for over 10 years and has over 20 years in IT as an IT Manager. Ian thousands of followers on Twitter and Facebook and over 4 million views on his YouTube channel.
  • Martin
    I’m pretty annoyed with LoveFilm at the moment, because I started watching a film on Saturday and when I returned to watch it on Sunday, it had gone. However, even with that current level of dissatisfaction, I’m not ready to jump to Netflix. Their site won’t allow you to preview what films they are offering, and they cost more than LoveFilm. So I would be signing up blindly to a more expensive service that might offer nothing more than a bunch of TV series that I’ve already seen, and a handful of 2nd rate films. Not likely. I’m going to wait for some descent enticements.
  • Garry Whittaker
    No sign of any mention of Media Center on the Netflix UK site. If that integration were to be available – as in the states – that might entice me.
  • Mark
    MC integration was mentioned on one of the firums i browse and someone responded that Canada is still waiting for MC integration of Netfilx and they got the service some years ago.

    As for me i won’t be using it. I am a lovefilm member but only use it to rent the latest blu-ray movies as I have the full Sky package as well. I’m building my own library rather than relying on someone else to decide whats best

  • tomson
    if there was a media center plugin then I’d give it a go… not going to be fiddling with the mouse.

    I’m a bit out of the loop… is there lovefilm media center plugin (i.e. made by lovefilm not via some dodgy 3rd party app?).

  • tomson
    Also.. with lovefilm etc, when you hit “play” do the films start playing directly or do you have to sit through compulsory adverts/trailers/warnings etc?
  • cw-kid
    I’d only swap from Love Film to Netflix if I can use the official MCE add-in for Netflix? Anyone tried switching their locale to US yet to get the Netflix add-in ?

    There is no offical Love Flim add-in for MCE and I don’t even stream anything from Love Film just get the discs in the post.

  • cw-kid
    Just asked the question on the Netflix support forum

    I’ve also emailed Microsoft on the WECH group email.

    If Canada never got the WMC add-in? then I highly doubt we will here in the UK.

  • tomson
    Good effort Stuart.

    I’d definately give this a go if there was an official plugin.

    Surely they can splash out some money for a media center plugin given how many users would use it solely for the reason it’s officially supported..but then.. if they don’t even do it in cananda I guess we are sol.

  • cw-kid
    Just seen a Netflix advert on TV ! Its gone up a penny now 6 pounds per month.
  • Andrew
    From the looks of this thread, even if you can get the Netflix plugin to show up on MCE (which I couldn’t do after a fair amount of effort) it’s only designed to work in the U.S. so won’t be an option. At a minimum, it would be nice to have a standalone PC app. I’m assuming we will again be disappointed by Microsoft, though, and that they won’t be making any of this, but it would be *great* if someone talked Martin over at Milliesoft into do an MCE plugin…which shouldn’t be tough given he’s already done a Lovefilm one.

    Another major complaint is that there doesn’t appear to be any queue or other way of favouriting films or adding them to a list. This is quite standard on Netflix U.S., Lovefilm and everything else like this so that you can browse around and add all the films you want to watch to a list and then check that list when you’re ready to watch. Unless I’m missing something, the only thing you can do here is search for a film each time you want to watch it. One feature that does seem really cool so far is the “kids” page which shows all of the cartoon characters at the top and your kids can just click on the one they want to watch.

    One tip for those who don’t know…if you open up netflix in IE9 and then click on its tab and drag it down to your taskbar in Windows 7, it will create a Netflix icon that leads to a bookmark of that page….so it’s almost like having a standalone app, though not quite. IE’s not my favorite, but it works well for this purpose and since I don’t use it for anything else I can leave it in full-screen mode all the time and it feels even more like a standalone app.

  • tomson
    why isn’t it in lovefilm or netflix’s interest to make a standalone app, surely there is enough media center users in canada to make it worth the dev costs?
  • cw-kid
    Well I had Netflix in MCE working OK when I lived in Thailand! I did use a USA VPN connection however. It should be possible to get the Netflix app in to MCE by changing the system locale in Windows to US and maybe a reg hack some where as well I can’t remember now.

    I will have to have another go at some point, not sure if a US VPN would be required from the UK ?

  • cw-kid
  • Dangelus
    I think there is a restriction in the Netflix API because even though Netflix accounts are universal, I can’t get the MCE plugin to play any US content even thought via VPN it thinks I am in the US and I can browse all the US content in the plugin with my UK login.
    Whenever I try to play something it just sends me to the Netflix homepage.

    I really hope they sort this as currently none of the HTPC solutions for a 10ft interface work at all for UK accounts regardless of whether you are accessing US or UK content.

    I am currently using Kylo browser to watch Netflix on my HTPCs as it has some Media Center integration and limited control via the remote but it is far from perfect.

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