Rent Movies Online with Netflix

Netflix is a subscription service that lets you rent DVDs for as long as you want (as long as you maintain an active subscription).

It’s a convenience: you can have three DVDs out at a time, watch them when you want, and return them. Once you return them the next set of movies is sent to you via mail.

The Netflix business model is really one step in a direction away from physical distribution: the future is in online digital distribution where you’ll be able to download movies on demand and watch them as long as you want.

Everyone has a different experience and different opinion about Netflix. Chris’s experience has generally been very good. Do you use Netflix or a similar service? What has been your experience with them?

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[tags]netflix, video, dvd, movie rental[/tags]

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  • http://www.merriam-press.com Ray Merriam

    I have been using Netflix for about a year now (I upped it to six movies at a time in December). You don’t have to return all the movies you have out before they send you more (which is how your comment reads) but as soon as they get a DVD back, they’ll send out the next available DVD in your queue (I currently have over 100 movies in my queue). Most of the time the DVDs are available without any delay. Occasionally one may have a short wait and really popular movies (especially new releases) might have a long wait. Although most of the time you’ll get the DVDs from the nearest Netflix center but sometimes they’ll ship a DVD from another of their centers if it’s available there.

    Most of the time I get a DVD the day after they ship it (the ones coming from a distant center could take a few extra days in the mail). Returns also usually get there the next day, and they’ll often mail out the next DVD that day.

    Occasionally a disc may be unplayable (I’ve received a couple of broken discs – and that’s the fault of the Postal Service – I was told by a local postal worker that they will sometimes go out of their way to see if they can break the discs). These can be returned and they will send a replacement.

    When they started offering movies online, I checked that service out and found it to be quite good, although you won’t find many, if any, recent movies there, at least not yet. And much of what is offered are not exactly “A” movies. But a few were actually quite good and I found some I had not even heard of before. I had no problems with viewing them over a cable connection.

    As you view and return movies, you’ll be asked to rate the movie from “Hated It” to “Loved It” and this supposedly allows them to pick other movies you might like, although sometimes that turns up some pretty unusual suggestions. And if you rate a movie poorly, they will almost never give you any suggestions (understandable I suppose).

    I watch the online movies on my four-year-old homebuilt computer (Intel 3 ghz, 1 MB memory) and four-year-old CTX LCD 17-inch monitor and the quality of the video is as good as that from a DVD disc played on the same setup (assuming the quality of the original film is good).

    Overall I give the regular Netflix service an A- and the online service a B-. The latter would be higher if they had more “A” grade movies available.

  • http://Netflixjustrocks Ryk

    I’ve been a Netflix subsriber for 4 or 5 years now and I can’t say enough about it. The best part for me is that they actually stock the movies I want to watch. My wife & I watch mostly independent films. We used to go to Blockbuster and found that they carry only 10-20% of the films we want to watch. Netflix carries about 95% of them. It’s rare that they don’t have something I want. The same goes for music DVS’s. Their selection dwarfs what you’ll find at a Blockbuster or other physical store.

    Another thing I like about Netflix is that they constantly tweak the features on their web site. They’ve incorporated a lot of DHTML to make things very, very easy and informative.

    Subscribe — you won’t regret it.