Last November, Netflix publicly responded to the questions of why there wasn’t an Android app for streaming video yet. Their answer: Android phones didn’t have the necessary DRM built-in to lock down the stream. Instead of a broad deployment, they would have to work on a case-by-case basis with select phones that had the necessary DRM capabilities. Today, Netflix announced they’ve started rolling out a Netflix streaming app to select phones.
Hi, this is Roma De from the product team at Netflix.
We are thrilled to announce that we have begun to roll out a Netflix application for the Android platform. We are making the free app available for download from Android Market. The Market download will initially be available only on select phones that currently have the requisite playback support. We expect to quickly add to the number of phones that can download from Android Market as we work with ecosystem partners to expand playback support.
The Android platform is gaining rapid adoption in the mobile world and presents a great opportunity to reach more of our members. Because the platform has evolved so rapidly, there are some significant challenges associated with developing a streaming video application for this ecosystem. One of these challenges is the lack of standard streaming playback features that the Netflix application can use to gain broad penetration across all available Android phones. In the absence of standardization, we have to test each individual handset and launch only on those that can support playback. We are aggressively qualifying phones and look forward to expanding the list of phones on which the Netflix app will be supported. We anticipate that many of these technical challenges will be resolved in the coming months and that we will be able to provide a Netflix application that will work on a large majority of Android phones.
For additional details on supported phones check here.
The Netflix app allows you to watch instantly via WiFi or 3G connections, resume watching a show where you left it previously on a different device, and browse/search the library. As of publishing, these phones are listed as being supported:
1. HTC Incredible with Android 2.2
2. HTC Nexus One with Android 2.2, 2.3
3. HTC Evo 4G with Android 2.2
4. HTC G2 with Android 2.2
5. Samsung Nexus S with Android 2.3.
Here’s to hoping that Samsung Galaxy S phones might be next on that quickly growing number of phones that can support the Netflix app. After that, I would just need Mediacom to support HBO Go and I’d have my fill of streaming access.
Odd note – The URL of today’s blog post from Netflix: http://blog.netflix.com/2011/05/normal-0-false-false-false-en-us-x-none.html