Posted by Tim Stobbs on February 23, 2012
So after hearing about Netflix Canada off and on for a while I decided to look into the service a few weeks ago. I realized I really didn’t know much of anything about the service, so here is the deal. First off it offers unlimited downloads of steaming movies and TV shows and you can watch them on a variety of devices: like your computer, iPod Touch, some Blu-ray players and even stream it through your gaming system (Wii, Xbox 360, PS3). Netflix Canada also has a free month trial to make sure you actually like it and then the cost if you keep it is only $7.99/month. Yet like all things there are good things and bad things about the service.
The most important thing to note about Netflix Canada is it is NOT the same as the US version. The selection is a lot less (I can’t recall the source, but I believe the Canada version has about 7000 movies and TV shows, the the US has like over 20,000). You won’t find any new releases on the service and the coverage for TV shows is very hit or miss. So know this going in and I highly recommend the free trial to search the system for what you may want to watch.
The other bad thing about the service is if you have caps on your bandwidth downloads from your internet service provider you could end up breaking them easily and paying a lot more in extra fees depending on how much you download. In my particular case, this isn’t a problem. I do have truly unlimited downloads from the internet.
Then lastly, your device to stream may very well limit your image quality on your TV screen, so if you have a 720p TV and you hook up your 480p output from your Wii you are going to notice a massive drop in the image quality. I’ve seen some reviews that say the Apple TV is perfect to avoid this, but I’ve yet to test it out myself so I can’t confirm any specific devices.
What somewhat surprised me about Netflix Canada was they have an entire section called: Netflix Kids, which is like crack to small children. They have a good selection of kids shows to keep the kids happy in case they are sick over the weekend (like I just had). Also you can stream to multiple devices at once, my kids were watching a show on the one TV while I watched a different movie on my laptop.
Netflix does carry some odd titles, and I’m saying this as a good thing. If you like documentaries, you will likely enjoy the service as it carries ones in some cases that I’ve heard off, but never seen anywhere else. Or older movies that you wanted to see at the time, but completely forgot about. I have an old list that I’m currently inputting and more often than not they have it. Also if you can I would suggest setting up the rating system, so you can input ratings on movies you have already watched to help Netflix make suggestions on shows you may enjoy.
Let’s face the facts to that the real plus of this service is the price. $8/month is dirt cheap (as long as you don’t get nailed with extra data charges).
In our particular case, I can see us keeping Netflix Canada. At $8/month it is great value for entertainment, despite it’s obvious issues. Perhaps the only thing I would like to do is test some other devices for streaming to find out which works the best, since my Wii is somewhat limited. While some people might hate this service based on what they watch, I actually have been enjoying it a lot.