Next week, PlayStation 3-using Netflix subscribers will be able to stream their movies with 5.1-channel surround sound. Of all the instant view outlets, the PlayStation 3 will be the first device to offer this feature.
The improved audio will come through the use of Dolby Digital Plus, which according to Netflix will add more device support in the coming months.
“Netflix is committed to delivering an unparalleled experience to its members who watch TV shows and movies streamed instantly over the Internet,” said Greg Peters, Netflix vice president of product development. “Netflix required an audio solution that could efficiently deliver an outstanding surround sound experience for a wide range of consumer devices. Dolby Digital Plus proved to be the best solution to meet our needs and the needs of our device partners.”
The new sound will come via a new built-in app for Netflix to be found on the PS3′s cross media bar under a new Netflix icon in the video category starting Monday. PS3 owners just have to sign in with their PSN accounts but will of course need a Netflix account as well.
The update also comes with other improvements, including:
• A new user interface, with search functionality
• Some movies and TV shows will be available in 1080i resolution
• The amount of time from start to playback will be improved
• An increasing number of movies and TV shows will be available with subtitles or alternate audio tracks
Combined with no longer needing the Netflix disc to use the service, the PS3 is becoming an increasingly attractive option for watching online movies. And for folks who only have a PS3, this is good news all around.