I Am Finally Dropping Netflix


I've been using Netflix since I tried out Roku's box (see Roku Netflix Player). I switched Netflix over to a Sony PS3 and used the Roku box on another TV. I have also tested other services like VUDU (see Vudu: Movies On Demand) for quite awhile but recent changes by Netflix with its new pricing structure forced me to examine what I really needed or wanted from a streaming services. I liked the regularity of getting a DVD in the mail because I would watch it at that time. The streaming support was a nice benefit and there were times when I used it heavily.

When Netflix upped their price I went with the streaming option with the idea of turning to outfits like Redbox when I wanted a DVD of a new movie. So far I haven't taken that route. I also found that I didn't watch Netflix streaming as much as I thought I would. I have a large queue but never get around to watching it. The lack of new movies was a definite distraction.

I did try viewing Netflix on my Droid but the results were not very good. I suspect a newer Android smartphone or one with a 4G connection would fare better. That might have been a reason to keep Netflix but I tend to watch my own recordings on my Droid.

So I finally pulled the plug on Netflix and haven't had cause to start it up again. I also decided to send back the HD DVR I was renting from Verizon. Their FIOS is great but the limited capacity of the HD DVR and the poor user interface was not worth the extra money. The one feature I will miss is the ability to automatically record the current program. The ability to rewind or pause was very nice.

So I am down to FIOS On demand which is pretty good and one reason the HD DVR was not used much. I still do a bit of recording with my MythTV (see Building A COM Express DVR) set up but it can only access local channels. The more interesting movie channels require a CableCard and that is not a feature available via MythTV as far as I know. The PS3 gets a lot of use playing Resistance 2 and occasionally a movie via VUDU.

Turning Netflix back on is a trivial online exercise so I can always get access to that content if I feel the need in the future. I'd be interested in hearing about your viewing habits and how they have changed over the years.

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William Wong

Bill Wong covers Digital, Embedded, Systems and Software topics at Electronic Design. He writes a number of columns, including Lab Bench and alt.embedded, plus Bill's Workbench hands-on column....
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