Editors' Note: The "Download Now" link directs you to the iTunes App Store, where you must continue the download process. You must have iTunes installed in order to open the link, and you must have an active iTunes account to download the application. This download may not be available in some countries.
There's no doubt that Netflix revolutionized the entertainment biz with its online service for renting movies. The company is fixing to continue its entertainment coup on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch with a free app that we've got to say is so far a joy to use.
Its straightforward design starts off with a home screen that shows off fun, featured content like "goofy crime comedies" and "dark dramas based on contemporary literature." Of course you can also browse for flicks and shows by more typical genres, like Action and Television. The app shows you all the show details: the rating, synopsis, and the list of episodes for TV shows.
This is all well and good, but the real power of the Netflix app is the ability to add content to your "instant queue" for on-demand streaming, or just play the video on the fly. The instant queue contains shows you've added online or from the mobile app, which means you can stream those movies and TV episodes directly to your iPhone or iPod Touch.
Video quality was excellent in our iPhone 4 and iPad tests in areas with strong connectivity; we noticed no bumps or breakups. The playback controls include a button to slightly adjust screen dimensions, plus there's a handy button to take you back 30 seconds if you didn't catch a part or want to see a killer scene over again.
What happens if you have to stop the show midway? Netflix keeps tabs of your place, and you can pick up where you left off from the top of the Home screen. If you close the app, the next time you load it you'll also have the option to resume playback from your drop-off point. It's like an automatic digital bookmark.
Although the app itself is free, you will need to subscribe to Netflix to take advantage. You can do so for about $9 a month, or sign up for a free 30-day trial before committing. The Netflix app really focuses on on-demand streaming; it does not currently manage your rentals queue, but we certainly wouldn't kick and scream if it did that as well.
Get Netflix on your iPad. Just download this free app and you can instantly watch TV shows & movies streaming from Netflix. Its part of your Netflix unlimited membership. Not a Netflix member? Start your FREE trial today. Watch as often as you want Resume watching where you left off on your TV or computer Browse movies and manage your Queue right from your iPad
What's new in this version:
Netflix app now supports iPhone and iPod Touch in addition to iPad.