Today it was announced that the Nintendo Wii will finally get Netflix streaming without a disc. This goes along with the announcement a few days ago that the Sony PS3 would also get disc-free Netflix along with some content in 1080p with 5.1 surround sound.
So, now the question is, will all Netflix apps get the 1080p, 5.1 treatment? Netflix is everywhere these days – on set-top boxes, DVR’s, Blu-Ray players, and Windows Media Center. But the announcements seem to indicate that only the PS3 is getting the special treatment. Obviously, the Wii is not a high-def player, but many other places where the app resides are. Netflix has said other platforms will eventually get 5.1, but I haven’t heard about the 1080p part.
I, for one, am an audio freak, but not so much a 1080p fanatic. That may be because my TV is 1080i, but I don’t think so. I just don’t see the difference as much as some claim to. But I am a complete surround sound nut. My TV’s speakers are set to zero volume and always have been. For all I know they don’t even work. My sound, for all devices, goes to my Yamaha AV receiver and if my TV is on then the receiver is on. And content without 5.1 annoys me. About a year ago I bought a movie from Amazon and it came with stereo sound – I have not bought another since. I’ve heard, though, that they are also releasing some content now with surround sound.
But, there are many 1080p people out there and the two (1080p and 5.1) should probably go together. Netflix has been a pioneer in this streaming field so it seems logical that they will lead this upgrade also. But, why not more announcements? Did Sony pay for an exclusive launch? If so, for how long? Maybe over the next few weeks we will get some of these answers. I and my rear speakers will be waiting.