Wii U Launches With Netflix Integration Despite Delay Rumours

When a product or service’s rumoured release date is pushed back further than originally planned, you can usually guarantee that it will be one that will not his the market until at least that renewed date (if ever). While it is obviously a common tactic to use to give content providers more breathing room to release a more complete finished product by the project’s new ‘end date’, the move can also be one to offer said ‘breathing room’ to a company by way of an increased ‘launch window’ to play around with.

Movie streaming provider Netflix is one such company that was able to utilise the latter option for their app on the Nintendo Wii U, as they took a previously unclear release date and were able to make a launch when they saw fit, which turned out to be on the same day as the console itself and a pleasant surprise for users of the new console, which came out in the North American market yesterday (18 November).

A Nintendo press release regarding the console was published last week, and had had this to say about the online streaming options of their new product: “In the coming weeks, an array of favorite movies and TV shows will become available to Wii U owners on Amazon Instant Video and to Hulu Plus and Netflix subscribers. These services will also be accessible from Nintendo TVii. Wii U owners will also be able to watch YouTube videos and channels through the YouTube application, as well as sign in to their account and control the application with the GamePad. Wii U owners who have connected their systems to the Internet will receive a notification as each video application becomes active.”

However, the platform’s much anticipated features for online streaming, which enable cross-device and cross-screen playback with ‘second screen’ content information pages that enable a seamless and customised experience, does seem to boast Netflix in its ranks now, as Netflix’s ‘director of product innovation’ Chris Jaffe noted: “Netflix is available today on the Wii U home screen with the Wii U launch in the US and Canada. Netflix members can sign-in for full access. The Netflix experience on the Wii U system was designed to take advantage of the console’s unique two-screen experience with up to 1080p HDTV and the Wii U GamePad for the best browsing and viewing experience.”

Reggie Fils-Aime, the president of ‘Nintendo of America’, summarised the ‘5 to 95′-targeting service that the Wii U will offer for video content, stating: “In the days and weeks ahead, the other three video services will be up and running. We’ve said that Nintendo TVii is coming in December, and so it truly is a living, breathing system that will bring more and more elements to bear over the days, weeks, months, and years ahead.”

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