Netflix has begun rolling out the second generation of their Watch Now streaming player, this time using Microsoft’s Silverlight technology. Silverlight is most easily thought of as Microsoft’s competitor to Adobe’s Flash technology. The big change with this second generation player is that, for the first time, it works on Mac OS, albeit Intel Macs only. To date Netflix’s Watch Now feature has been limited to only Windows PCs. The Play Ready DRM features built into Silverlight apparently satisfy their need to protect their content licenses.
“Silverlight with Play Ready offers a powerful and secure toolkit for delivery of dynamic streaming, which offers faster start-up, and higher quality video, adapted in real time to users’ connection speeds,” said Netflix Chief Product Officer Neil Hunt. “Members who enjoy watching movies and TV episodes from the growing library of choices that can be instantly streamed at Netflix will be thrilled with this next generation improvement of access and quality, on a broader range of platforms, including Intel Macs and Firefox.”
The initial roll-out“will initially touch a small percentage of new Netflix subscribers”, but it is anticipated that it will be available to all subscribers by the end of the year.