Upcoming Xbox 360 Netflix update is still gimped, Microsoft thinks you want it that way
byTim Stevens||August 5th 2009 at 9:26amAugust 5th 2009 9:26 am
If you haven't been lucky enough to preview the upcoming Xbox Live dashboard update like we did, there's a good chance you're eagerly awaiting its August 11 release so that you can finally modify your Netflix queue straight from the box. If so, prepare to be disappointed... or, uh, thrilled when you find out that the new experience isn't quite as comprehensive as you might have expected. It restricts users to perusing the Top 50 films in any of a handful of categories, meaning no searching by title and no browsing alphabetically. Why? According to Microsoft's Ben Smith, Director of Program Management for Xbox Live, that's how you want it. He says: "I think when people come to Xbox they're not really looking so much for functional, they really want to have fun, they want to be wowed." We're saying "wow," all right, but for entirely different reasons. There is a morsel of good news, though: if enough people indicate they actually like function and want an honest-to-goodness, full-featured Netflix experience Microsoft is fully prepared to upgrade the service. Again. Eventually.