News Article

Netflix Channel Now Available From Wii Shop

Posted by Jon Wahlgren

System update brings native app to North American subscribers [UPDATED]

Prepare a cool, condensation-laden drink next time you sit down to watch Netflix on your Wii, because that disc formerly required to stream videos has now become a stylish new coaster. Beating even the regularly scheduled Nintendo Download to the punch today, a native application for the movie service is now available on the Wii Shop channel.

The download is free of charge but can only be used by those with a streaming-enabled Netflix subscription, which should cover most users. Weighing in at a mere 49 blocks, the application has received a slight makeover and now includes a search function.

Wii isn't the only console getting in on the application train, as the PS3's native Netflix app also launches today, bringing 5.1 surround sound, subtitles and alternate audio tracks. While they don't seem to be on Wii, we've asked Netflix for comment on whether subtitles and alternate audio track support is in fact included and will update this story upon response.

[UPDATE] A Netflix rep has confirmed that subtitles and alternate audio tracks are not available in the Wii application.

[UPDATE] Said Netflix rep has confirmed that subtitles and alternate audio tracks are in fact available in the Wii application.

A Wii system update must be installed in order to download and use the channel.

Netflix Now Available as a Download from the Wii Shop Channel

Watching Movies and TV Shows Streamed Instantly from Netflix is Now Just a Click Away

REDMOND, Wash.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Beginning today, Netflix members in the United States and Canada can stream content through their Wii™ consoles with Netflix installed on their Wii Menu. The Netflix disc that was used for instant streaming on the Wii console will no longer be required. Netflix members who have a plan starting at $8.99 a month ($7.99 in Canada), a Wii console and a broadband Internet connection can now instantly watch movies and TV shows streamed directly to their TVs by simply downloading Netflix from the Wii Shop Channel. This new channel is available at no extra cost. The new disc-free option installs Netflix on the Wii Menu, making it convenient for Wii owners to quickly access streaming movies and TV shows.

“At this time of year, consumers have a near-insatiable demand for family entertainment,” said Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime. “And this simplified Netflix access will help bring families together more quickly, more easily and in more ways than ever before. More than 3 million Wii systems have already connected to Netflix, demonstrating how easy the service is to set up and use.”

“Wii is a consummate home entertainment platform and has quickly become one of the best and most popular ways to enjoy movies streamed from Netflix,” said Reed Hastings, co-founder and CEO of Netflix. “The availability of Netflix right on the Wii Menu adds significantly to the ease and convenience that attracts our members to the Netflix streaming experience and is an important step in our efforts to continuously improve the service.”

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User Comments (79)

irken004

#4

irken004 said:

I'd download the channel, but I don't even have a Netflix account to use with it...

ejamer

#8

ejamer said:

BRILLIANT. I've been very pleased with the Netflix service here in Canada, and this makes it even more convenient. Color me very impressed.

Slapshot

#9

Slapshot said:

Im loving this. PS3/Wii both in my house and I use Netflix on all of the systems and I hate having to keep up with the disc and keep up with keeping the disc activated.

Netflix is the best, I got rid of my cable provider and never buy BDs or rent movies ever. I pay like $15 a month for Netflix and I normally would spend that in one weekend easy renting movies and I know my wife has watched over 10 full lenght seasons of shows and those get really expensive to buy.

Battlestar Galactica is now up on Netlflix in FULL! Its fracking awesome!

Objection

#10

Objection said:

I might download this in the future, since I already have the disc and my family has the NF account.

rustythekid

#13

rustythekid said:

And once again I can't access the shop channel and I'll have to wait a couple of days until the update finally works like the two before this one.
Plus, Netflix is not available around here. :(

BulbasaurusRex

#14

BulbasaurusRex said:

Sorry, but $9 a month every month doesn't provide value for the amount of movies I watch. I'll stick with RedBox.

LuWiiGi

#16

LuWiiGi said:

Oh, C'MON! Would someone PLEASE think of the Europeans?

I know we're getting the SMB Anniversary stuff but I'm still jealous...

PSICOffee

#17

PSICOffee said:

funny, I was thinking of getting the disc sometime soon. This is a better option obviously because now it can just be a channel. However, I also have a ps3 so the ability to play blue ray is too great an option not to pass up. I think having to pay $9 a month for unlimited movies or whatever isn't bad at all if I have to spend that same amount to be able to rent only 2 movies at some rental store. But the problem with that is there aren't many movies at all I want to see at the moment, so maybe if I wait a year to see movies after everyone else, then get this, I can pay for only 1 month and be able to watch a gajillion movies in that time!

WaveBoy

#19

WaveBoy said:

Apperantly Netflex's picture quality has artifacts and it's 'almost' as good as Bluray PQ....And do you even get DTS HD Master audio? Still, nothing beats having an actual DVD/Bluray, because actually having a physical case is awesome. I'd never buy digital downloads...

Hell, I wish WiiWare titles could be sold as retail titles for cheap and of course being available as Digital downloads.as well. Do you realise how amazing it would be to have a Mega Man 9 Wii Case? :D

Anyways, the Playstation store rental service for me was a tad' dissapointing. And that's because of the lack luster audio. NO DTS HD Master, and the 2.0/5.1 doesn't even sound as good as Dolby Digital...It's a big let down. Let alone their 'new' HD releases(as well as many of their other HD and SD releases) like Iron Man 2 only has 2 channel support. wtf!?...Also Bluray releases aren't 1080p, but instead 720p.

MasterGraveheart

#20

MasterGraveheart said:

Oh, excellent! Switching discs out is for the not so lazy... now how about that Animal Crossing: City Folk channel, Nintendo? =P

MotorTCD

#22

MotorTCD said:

I didn't need a subcription because you used to be able to buy individual movies(idk if you still can) from netflix with ms points

JonWahlgrenAdmin

#23

JonWahlgren said:

@JirachiFan: Those aren't through Netflix, those are through the Microsoft-owned-and-operated Zune Marketplace. Netflix never sold movies on XBLM.

@Captain-Delton: Have you been able to get them to work? I've been unsuccessful.

WaLzgiStaff

#27

WaLzgi said:

@Games: Apparently they had some sort of exclusive agreement with Microsoft about not using discs on the Xbox. How and why I don't know.

Philip_J_ReedStaff

#28

Philip_J_Reed said:

There seems to be confusion among some commenters here. Netflix does not sell films/TV shows as downloads. This is a streaming service, meaning you're just watching the content as you would on YouTube or Hulu or something like that.

You pay monthly for the rights to access that content on a streaming basis (and to rent DVDs through the mail, if you so choose)...you don't pay for (or keep) downloads.

Tasuki

#31

Tasuki said:

I am glad they finally did this I have two Wiis in my house and only one disc so at times the disc would be by the other Wii so I would have to go downstairs late at night when I wanted to watch a movie just to get the disc. Either that or I would have to unhook my Wii and hook up the Xbox, either way kinda a pain to do just to watch a movie. I am glad they did it this way now I will be watching more movies on my Wii.

Slapshot

#33

Slapshot said:

@Waveboy.... I pay $15 a month. I get 2 BluRay in the mail at a time and I have full access to all the streaming movies I can bare to watch. On the Wii the picture clarity is good, but not near as good as the PS3. On the Wii it has a tendency to have picture breaks at times. Its nothing major and up until now, Ive used my Wii primarily as a Netflix player.

Bottom Line in my experiences. Streaming Netflix on Wii is basically the same as watching it on a DVD.

Streaming Netflix on a PS3 is pretty much the same as watching a DVD in a PS3 with the HD Upscaler on.

Nothing compares to actual BluRay Movies! But you can get those too lol.

SwerdMurd

#35

SwerdMurd said:

Does this mean you can no longer get Netflix discs? The reason I ask is I know there was a deal where you get 20 Nintendo Points for registering the disc with Club Nintendo...I'm wondering if that incentive is going to disappear...

Not like it matters. How many bookmarks can one person buy, anyway? :)

Blizzaga

#43

Blizzaga said:

This is funny. I just ordered another disc last night because I was tired of having to share it with my little brother who also has a Wii.

Blizzaga

#44

Blizzaga said:

Also...Nintendo Life should host a competition for the most creative way the obsolete discs can be used. XD

Junior117

#46

Junior117 said:

@36 This means you will no longer get the Netflix streaming disc. However, Nintendo may still allow you to get 20 Nintendo coins when you download the Netflix app (Otherwise, it's going to be 10).

Bookmarks? Do you mean the instant queue? As many as Netflix allows you to (it's limited by your Netflix account, not from your Wii).

suburban_sensei

#47

suburban_sensei said:

This is great news! Since my room is too far from our router to have a strong enough signal to stream HD on my PS3, I just watch stuff in SD on my Wii anyways. Glad to see when something useful comes out, since its a bit more convenient.

GammaGames

#48

GammaGames said:

Could we download this, even if you dont have an account? Ill go try now, and report on my findings :P Oh wait, it says its free. Ill go get it, maybe get an account someday :P

GammaGames

#50

GammaGames said:

it is downloading! And, @ silverblacktail, use it as a coaster like the article said, or sharpen it up and make it into a deadly frisbe (the disk obviously). Get creative!

MakeMyBiscuit

#52

MakeMyBiscuit said:

Fantastic!

Thank you Netflix & Nintendo. I have been waiting for this ever since I got my Netflix subsription.

I just watched "Overhaulin'"!

YEAH!!!

jbrodack

#54

jbrodack said:

I think netflix had some kind of deal with microsoft to keep service as an app only for xbox for a while and require discs for others. Now ps3 and wii have locally store netflix. Nice that netflix is now updated with new features like search and subtitles/audio tracks.

Sylverstone

#55

Sylverstone said:

Well, I don't have an account.

But seeing as they do have old shows I loved.... I may consider.

ToastyYogurt

#56

ToastyYogurt said:

Well, this pretty much covers everything to whine about with Netflix for Wii, with the search being included in the channel and all that. I'll download this as soon as I can!

Wiilicious

#58

Wiilicious said:

Just download the application and setup my Netflix account. It's pretty easy but here in Canada I found the movie and tv shows selection pretty limited. Hope it get better with time.

nice_shirt

#59

nice_shirt said:

Much improved over the disk software. The ability to search for content is extremely helpful. Just watched Beetlejuice!

Junior117

#61

Junior117 said:

@54 and @36 Oh.

I believe it's three.

Ya, I gotta admit... the rewards aren't on par with it's japanese counterparts. However, it looks like some are selling well (Most of the folding fans are sold out).

irken004

#62

irken004 said:

FInally made an account and got this. It works very well, with DVD quality viewing (I watched part of Iron Man 1 to test it)

PaperLucario

#63

PaperLucario said:

I loved being able to use my Wii/PS3 to stream programs from Netflix, but having to put the disc in/out got alittle annoying. Now with streaming disc-less, finally I relax and watch all of the History Channel Documentaries Super Mario Bros. Super Show Episodes I want with little hassle.

Metal_Slugger

#64

Metal_Slugger said:

I didn't need a system update not sure why. Its gonna take a bit to get used to. I like that its a channel that thing was practically glued in my wii. Now I can play more games. I don't like the gray background looked better white and everything is a slightly slower now. I still love that they offered it up as a channel and the benefits outweigh the complaints. Don't care for the smaller arrows to move left or right either. Overall great start hope they improve it in time. Knowing Netflix it will be ages but you never know.

Peznaze

#66

Peznaze said:

Interesting. If they could do it this way, why did they even bother with a disc? It's got to cost them less to distribute the software this way... Unless that disc contains barely functional software designed to test the market, I don't see why it ever existed. Unless it was something Nintendo required. Nintendo does seem loathe to offer anything for free in the Wii Shop any more...

Metal_Slugger

#69

Metal_Slugger said:

@nice_shirt good tip thanks. You ever noticed that darn glitch in the last one you click to go right and it would end up all the way to the end of the line of titles? That would drive me nuts. That grey ( wrong grey it could be good in grey) background looks horrible black or white would look much better. Oh well and the streaming quality feels like it went down quite a bit. I upped my bandwidth recently and noticed the improvement in streaming now it looks like it was before the upgrade. Still great to be able to have a game in the slot now though. So I will roll with that for sure.

A1234

#70

A1234 said:

I am thinking about trying the free 1 month trial. probably start nov 1. but, it is strange that they mention you can cancel anytime. isn't this only 1 month? it should just stop after 1 month. kind of sounds like a scam. where you have to cancel after 1 month? if you don't cancel then they will start charging you?

Metal_Slugger

#71

Metal_Slugger said:

@ZIMM yes they will keep charging you until you stop the subscription it's not a scam. You just have to be on the ball I doubt you will stop once you start though. It's tough to live without it once your used to it. Although I like the streaming it was really nice when they got new releases on the release date. Now there is a 28 day wait for most new releases. They claim these studio deals give them better streaming contracts and no long waits for new releases when they come out. Some lies some not. The streaming is there selling point now.

DavidRY

#72

DavidRY said:

Anyone figure out how the subtitles and audio options work/some titles as examples? The sole reason I haven't been watching all the Anime thats on there is the poor english voice acting (so sue me for preferring subtitles - it was what I was raised on!)

cheapogamer4life

#73

cheapogamer4life said:

Good update. Glad to see that they have a one month trial offer so I may try this whenever I get me some mifi service.

MrMartinLee

#74

MrMartinLee said:

What an excellent update! I look forward to trying out the subtitle and alternate audio options.

Nintonic

#75

Nintonic said:

Nice! I've been wanting a search bar for netflix for a long time! Nice, now I do not need a disc! XD

Tasuki

#77

Tasuki said:

@ZIMM: Alot of places do that with free trials now thats why alot of them ask for a credit card number even though its a free trial. As Metal Slugger said you just have to keep an eye out when its about over and cancel before the 30 days are up to avoid being charged. Simple enough.

Ziggyguy21

#78

Ziggyguy21 said:

Netflix should have done this a long time ago.Sucks I dont have a Netflix subscription.

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