Sunday, August 24, 2008


Here it has been almost another month since my last post, but work has been keeping me very busy. We are now going six days a week as our project deadlines get closer. In my limited spare time, I am playing with a bunch of new toys that we have gotten for the Wii like Rock Band and Mario Kart, but my new favorite entertainment device has to be the Roku. Roxi gave it to me for my birthday and since we have set it up, we have been loading up our Netflix Instant Queue and ripping through movies and television shows.

For the uninitiated, a while back, Netflix started to offer movies in streaming format on your computer instead of having to wait for the disk to arrive by mail. As a "Mac guy," I couldn't participate as the streams were and are still only availble on PC. Initially, there was also a limitation to how many "instant" movies you could watch per month but now any unlimited movie package through Netflix includes unlimited "instant" movies. No one really wants to sit at their computer and watch a movie and few people have the patience to move their computer near their TV so that they can watch movies that way. So it was only a matter of time before devices would be available for transferring those movies to your television. Roku is one such device and it couldn't be easier to use.

We connected our Roku in a matter of minutes and the device was linked to our Netflix account and activated in almost no time. Then it was just a matter of populating our new Instant Queue. The movie selection is definitely limited right now, but so was the selection of DVDs when Netflix first started doing business. The selection will only get better with time and we are finding plenty of things to watch. The movies are streamed wirelessly to the TV and the picture quality is as good anything else we watch. The movies only take a minute or two to initially load and so far have run uninterrupted as long as we don't fast forward or rewind. Those actions do cause the stream to rebuffer, but again it only takes a minute or two.

The most beautiful part of all is that there is no additional cost beyond the regular monthly Netflix fee. On top of that, any unlimited movie rental plan includes unlimited instant movies. Right now we are paying $16 per month to get three DVDs at a time, but we will be downgrading to one DVD at a time for a mere $8 and will still enjoy unlimited streaming movies. That's a pretty great deal if you ask me!

I love the Roku so far and look forward to expansion of the instant movie cataloge. It appears that Netflix has finally lived up to its name.


Kate :) said...

so forgive this question because it might be really dumb. does the roku thing store the movies on there? seems like a cool contraption that would make watching dexter much easier. :)

Wes Raine said...

The movies and TV shows are only streamed to the device, not actually downloaded onto the device. It allows for the shows to load more quickly than if they were downloaded.