Netflix Week continues (and we may not even done)…
This morning, the New Xbox Experience (NXE) was delivered to my console. After quickly creating a non-representative (i.e. slender) avatar, I jumped right into Netflix. Unlike the previous 360 interface, the new one appears to be extensible – adding functionality without requiring a massive software update. What I’m trying to say is that Netflix isn’t pre-loaded and, by clicking on the tile for the first time, I was prompted to download it.
The Xbox Netflix interface is much richer, both in appearance and functionality, than what currently exists on the Roku Netflix box. A conceptual hurdle for some, at least initially, may still be fast forward and rewind via thumnail rather than traditional video scrubbing – a Netflix streaming limitation design decision. Like Engadget, I can put to bed the HDCP requirement rumors… Netflix, Xbox, and my HDTV are all reporting high definition streaming. I suppose it’s possible that Netflix is reducing the resolution over my component connection, but wouldn’t the UI indicate that? It also may be possible that HDCP is required only when using HDMI – meaning, some early HD sets may not support the handshake.
In the video above, you can see the opening Xbox video and a brief Netflix Watch Instantly walk-thru. Keep in mind that due to my network capture technique and YouTube encoding, you’ll probably notice dropped frames and longer buffering – this is not entirely representative. But if a picture is worth a thousand words, perhaps a recording is worth 10,000. At least until that take-down notice arrives… ;)
The NXE is currently available as a preview to a limited subset of customers and official launch is scheduled for November 19th.