AfterDawn: Tech news

PS3 to get Netflix streaming through BD-Live

Written by Rich Fiscus (Google+) @ 26 Oct 2009 4:29 User comments (18)

PS3 to get Netflix streaming through BD-Live Last week Reed Hastings announced that Netflix had a new consumer electronics partner who would be providing a client for their Watch Instantly streaming video service. Today they made a joint announcement with Sony saying the PS3 will be getting the Netflix service.
What's more interesting is the way Sony will be adding this feature to their game consoles initially. They will use Blu-ray's BD-Live capabilities and require a special Blu-ray disc available for free to any Netflix member.

You can register to be notified when the discs are available by going to the Netflix website. PS3 Netflix support should become available some time next month.

This is arguably the most ambitious use of BD-Live to date. BD-Live is a feature of Profile 2.0 Blu-ray players. It allows additional content to be provided via a player's built in networking and a broadband internet connection.

In this case BD-Live will be used to provide all the content instead of just extras.

Previous Next  

18 user comments

126.10.2009 5:46

It's about time! Then again, both sony and netflix have hinted at such things before, only to deny them later...these companies have lied to me so many times that it might be hard to believe even if I have the disk and am watching netflix on my PS3.

226.10.2009 7:43

Anyone else think the BD-Live thing is a way around the Xbox Exclusivity Agreement?

326.10.2009 7:53

yeah one need to register on their website to hope to get that special disc.how long need to wait for it?let me tell you netflix for me did not worked at all,well i waited 2 months for blueray copy of fringe disc one.netflix shipped series beginning from disc 5 up.disc 1 never was available.their streaming selection is just pitiful,mostly old movies.quality on my computer using silverlight was just watchable.so i rate service just so-so.for sure nothing to be thrilled.not to mention that my service degraded after time(yes i was heavy user but it is unlimited service).I'm saying throttling here.not to mention scratched or unplayable movies.sure service is better than blockbuster but in my opinion not worth my 20 some bucks a month.until netflix fixes their service ps3 streaming service is just a novelty.i will wait till than.

426.10.2009 8:29

Originally posted by dsgrce:
Anyone else think the BD-Live thing is a way around the Xbox Exclusivity Agreement?
Yes

526.10.2009 8:44

Quote:
Originally posted by dsgrce:
Anyone else think the BD-Live thing is a way around the Xbox Exclusivity Agreement?
Yes
Next up ~ Cross Game Chat ;)
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 26 Oct 2009 @ 8:45

626.10.2009 9:26

Originally posted by Oner:
Quote:
Originally posted by dsgrce:
Anyone else think the BD-Live thing is a way around the Xbox Exclusivity Agreement?
Yes
Next up ~ Cross Game Chat ;)
What developer leeked that and when @ is it comming? It is something that I dont see myself using but is an equalizer in nonsense arguments.

You been on Vacation or something? Havent seen you around.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 26 Oct 2009 @ 9:27

726.10.2009 10:15

Originally posted by glassd:
Originally posted by Oner:
Quote:
Originally posted by dsgrce:
Anyone else think the BD-Live thing is a way around the Xbox Exclusivity Agreement?
Yes
Next up ~ Cross Game Chat ;)
What developer leeked that and when @ is it comming? It is something that I dont see myself using but is an equalizer in nonsense arguments.

You been on Vacation or something? Havent seen you around.
It has been in the news here and there but after Super_Secret's post calling out EA it seems to have been the final push. Here is his post in it's entirety ~

Quote:
I promised you all an update on Cross-Game chat, so here it is.

And youíre not going to like it.

As I told you before, Cross-game voice chat has been in the works for a while now. I mentioned last time that it was on target for 3.0 providing that we didnít hit any snags. Well guess what, we hit a snag! An all too familiar snag.

Time for a history lesson.

How many of you remember what it was like before FW 2.4? Thatís right Ė no in-game XMB. No custom soundtracks. In-game XMB was the most heavily requested feature at the time and we worked tirelessly in order to get it in (By ďweĒ, I mean Sony Japan Ė as I said before, FW isnít my department). It very nearly didnít happen, you have no idea how difficult it is to backport a feature like that onto a system (the game) that doesnít even know its there, but somehow we managed it. Well, for most titles. There are still the odd few titles out there that donít support in-game XMB (ĒblackĒ titles).
Custom soundtracks was another one we had working in nearly every title. Obviously it was never going to work in black titles, but about 95% of the titles that worked well with the in-game XMB, had custom sountracks working as well.

So what happened? Why is it that titles HAVE to be developed specifically with custom soundtrack support when it was working more or less just fine?

Is it because Microsoft owns the patent on custom soundtracks in games?

This is something that makes me laugh every time I see one of the less educated ones spouting it off. Thatís an absolute fabrication. Patents donít matter, Sony as a while infringes upon thousands of patents through the whole company, both hardware and software. If you infringe a patent, you pay royalties to the owner or find a different way of doing the same thing that doesnít infringe. Thatís it. Microsoft infringes upon all kinds of patents we own but thatís up to legal to sort out.

No, the reason we had to drop Custom soundtrack support like that has nothing to do with Microsoft. It does, however, involve a different company. A rather large company.
You see, one of their games happened to fall into the 5% that didnít support in-game custom soundtracks. And they did not like this.
When they found out that a new firmware update was going to suddenly make one of their games look inferior to just about every other game released, they protested. A lot.
They threatened everything, from legal action to dropping support for the PS3 all together.

What could we do? There was almost no way of getting it to work correctly due to the way their game was made (i.e. Poorly) and we certainly couldnít leave a broken implementation in there. Thatís when the hard decision was made to remove all support for older titles and instead adopt the ďopt-inĒ approach that, to this day, most developers simply ignore. I have to hand this to Microsoft Ė they did their system right from the beginning and by completely separating it from the developers, they have universal support. Its very unlikely that youíll ever see mandatory support for custom soundtracks in games on our system, Iím afraid.
So yeah, lets nail this on the head: The next time someone starts blaming Microsoft for something the PS3 doesnít have, tell them theyíre an idiot, they donít know what theyíre talking about. Are we clear on this? This is a pet peeve of mine because while everyoneís happy to go around blaming Microsoft, the real culprits are getting off scott-free. Of course, I canít actually name them directly or, should I get caught, I might even get done for slander (you can never be too careful), but you can figure it out Ė itís not Activision and they have a poor history with the PS3.

So what has this got to do with Cross-game voice chat?

Guess.

I warned you that we might hit a snag and we did. Weíve found a couple of titles that just donít like it. Similar to the custom soundtrack fiasco, it can cause lag, crashes, desyncronisation (very very bad when this happens), you name it. It canít be used in these games and it just so happens that some of these games are owned by the same company Iíve been talking about above.
So weíre in a predicament: Cross-game chat is useless if only certain games support it. Itís not too bad if its just the odd one that doesnít like it, but at this rate weíd have to drop support for the ENTIRE back catalogue, which would (As I said) make the whole thing useless.
Furthermore, we canít rely on developers to implement direct support for it. It didnít work with Custom Soundtracks, so why would it work here?
So right now, weíre trying every little trick in the book to find a solution that works for everyone, but donít hold your breath on this one, so far it looks like the best youíre going to get is a gimped implementation of it that only works with a handful of new games.

Now as I said, FW isnít actually my department and even Iím not supposed to know some of this stuff, but this is actually where we are right now. It sucks majorly, but there you have it. Depending on the end result, it could come in FW 3.1 or it could come in FW 4.0, hell it might not even come at all but rest assured they are working very hard on it. And if it doesnít come, you know who to blame.
And with Super_Secret's accuracy being spot on with the Slim, it's removed features and many other "predictions" being correct it is nothing short of a confirmation in itself; BUT the real kicker came from Naughty Dog because they actually slipped up on a post over @ the Official PS Forums ~

http://playstationlifestyle.net/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/XGAMECHATCONFIRMEDBYDEV.jpg

It's really just a matter of time. Sony has SOOOO much speed behind it right now that from here on out, I see it outselling it's competition and gaining much ground in position. There is just so much going for it and the fact that the 360's double price drop (1 permanent and 1 "test" in less than 6 weeks) followed by the Wii's price drop (which have not made the substantial sales they where expecting) indicates that my assumptions/predictions where correct.

But back on topic...I personally like BlockBuster because of the free option for BD's and the ability to exchange discs in store PLUS now you can do game rentals as well! All that the PS3 needs now is for BB to offer an online streaming service and it's a wrap for me!

As for where I have been etc, it's actually been pretty hectic for me the last month or so. I am in the process of buying/customizing/building a new Townhouse (final walk through is this Wednesday & closing is this Friday) not too mention that I had to fly to the Bronx last Friday to drive down (NY -> FL) some stuff of mine I still had at my Parents house! So now it's the mad dash to pack and move + set everything up when I am over there...but it's gonna be worth it!
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 26 Oct 2009 @ 11:45

826.10.2009 10:35

Thanks and good luck with the move. Now I remember where he spelt out EA with his sipher.

926.10.2009 12:21

Originally posted by glassd:
Thanks and good luck with the move. Now I remember where he spelt out EA with his sipher.
Yep that's the one & TY!
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 26 Oct 2009 @ 12:21

1026.10.2009 13:43

Originally posted by dsgrce:
Anyone else think the BD-Live thing is a way around the Xbox Exclusivity Agreement?
Yes. This way Netflix can say it was designed for online capable BD players and not the PS3.

1126.10.2009 13:47

I donít have Netflix. I hear that the Streaming lacks new releases. Is this so?

1227.10.2009 0:18

WOW thanks for the info Oner on the Naughty Dog slip up. Thats the first I've heard of it but I still have that less than 1% belief that it wont happen for some reason. As for catching up to the xbox's features it does seem like a matter of time before they catch up.

1327.10.2009 1:33

Originally posted by glassd:
I donít have Netflix. I hear that the Streaming lacks new releases. Is this so?
There is a huge backlog of movies that are to be added. Some movies get fasttracked if they are big releases, but this is not very common.

1427.10.2009 14:57

As with 'On Demand' services and such, you're not going to see first week, or even month releases. And honestly that's been true for many years. Studios want to sell as many copies as possible before making the product available in an easier one-time medium.

There aren't a whole lot of VERY new movies, though the Starz selection is pretty good.

The bottom line is that you don't log into this service and say "I want to watch Transformers 2, I hope they have it." You log in saying "I want to watch something funny, something scary, or something with a lot of good action. Maybe something starring Johnny Depp, or Bruce Willis." And you look through, and you discover titles you've never seen before, and you enjoy them because there are a LOT of great movies on there. Much like going to a formal retail store, there are plenty of bad B movies, but that's just a side effect of the industry itself, no fault of online rental programs.

As for the BD Live thing, yeah, it's a cop-out to bypass the contract. And, I'm sure M$ had considered this before. That's okay, I like watching movies on my 360; and that doesn't become any less viable just because my friend with a PS3 will be able to do the same; though I sympathize that he has to put a special disc in his drive in order to do so. -.-

1527.10.2009 21:58

OK call me slow, but I was trying to watch streaming video from the web browser on PS3 and couldn't see it or hear it. Are you guys (sorry girls) saying that there is presently no way this can be done and it doesn't look like I will be able to any time soon?

1628.10.2009 13:09

*headdesk*

Okay.... Let's start over. You're not going to be able to do it through the PS3's internal web browser any time soon. It's not designed to handle large scale operations, and doesn't manage the small amount of available memory in an effective way. So, streaming through the web browser isn't going to be a viable option.

However, if you're a PS3 user, or owner of a BD-Live enabled Blu Ray player, you'll be able to put in a disc that will link you up to Netflix' service, and stream more effectively through there. This will cut out a lot of the system resources used by the browser itself, and be able to focus your system just onto the video itself, enabling much higher quality, similar to what is seen on 360's now.

1730.10.2009 23:08

Resource use ignored, NetFlix movies are Silverlight 3 format. There is no version of this available for the PS3 OS/web browser. There is silverlight for linux, but it will not play Silverlight 3 content.

Netflix/Sony could easily build an app to work with these movies, and even build it into the XMB...except Microsoft bribed Netflix many millions of dollars to keep them off of the PS3. This is a way around that bribe...by releasing a disc that will work with any internet connected BDlive Bluray player (including the PS3).

The next update to GTA4 PS3 should have add a feature that allows you to import the content from "Liberty City Stories 360"...they are not selling it as a PS3 title, afterall.

1831.10.2009 9:33

Thanks, I appreciate the information, but I am still a little confused. As you can probably guess, I'm a "Newbie" in every sense of the word. Let me see if I understand you properly before I venture further. PS3 is a BD Live enabled player, but in order to view streaming content, I need a disk which will allow me to access the Netfix service. This will effectively allow me to watch, say a live nhl hockey game via wireless modem. Yeah, you dragged it out of me, I know, paint an "L" on my forhead.
What about the GTA4 update? Do I need to download anything for that? Or does it update automatically if you play online?

What so you think? Am I getting it right, or is this discussion way out of my league? Is there a thread somewhere where I can follow a simple discussion where I might learn a little bit about this?

Thanks for your help, J

Comments have been disabled for this article.

News archive