Sony Pulling Netflix Streams19 Nov, 2008 By: Erik Gruenwedel
Sony has reportedly pulled select titles earmarked for distribution via online DVD rental pioneer Netflix’s nascent broadband streaming service on Microsoft’s new Xbox 360 Experience.
The titles, which include Superbad, Across the Universe and Spider-Man 2, among others, are excluded solely from the Xbox 360 and not other digital channels Netflix previously created with LG Electronics, Samsung, TiVo, and its proprietary Roku-manufactured set-top box, according to an online report by The Motley Fool.
The reason: Sony doesn’t want to give consumers and gamers a reason to purchase the Xbox instead of its PlayStation 3 console heading into the pivotal holiday shopping season.
Sony wasn’t talking, but Netflix spokesperson Steve Swasey admitted there was “some truth” to the report without identifying Sony or impacted movies.
He said a few hundred titles had been made temporarily unavailable for streaming on the 360 Experience, but were still available on the other devices and Netflix.com.
“These titles regularly come in and out of license, and there is a natural ebb and flow to what we have licensed at any point in time,” Swasey said. “We hope [these titles] will be available for the 360 shortly.”