WTF is Netflix
No, it’s not the latest porn site you need to check out but it is coming to Australia this month and can be a pretty addictive Internet-sourced form of entertainment. Basically, Netflix is a SVOD (subscription video on demand) service that for a flat monthly fee lets you watch TV shows, movies, documentaries, and stand-up comedy over the Internet (smart TV’s, tablets, smart phones, video game consoles, Apple TV, Chromecast, Blu-ray and home theatre systems, and set top boxes) rather than over terrestrial (free to air) TV broadcast services (ABC, Seven, Nine and Ten) or cable/pay services like Foxtel. The main difference is you watch what you want, where you want, and when you want rather than when some fat cat thinks you should watch it and when they can sell the most advertisement spots around it.
Essentially it’s almost like pirating your favourite shows and watching as many as you like – except you pay a token monthly fee and the tech nerds at Netflix make sure you get the fastest and best quality stream your bandwidth can handle. They also throw in a complex system that monitors what you watch, how much you like it and suggests more and more things that you would logically also like, given your tastes. So, in essence, the more you use it the more it gets to “know” you and recommend more things in your tastes. It’s almost like a really attentive girlfriend if we were to use an objectifying metaphor of the female human being here. Which we aren’t.
As far as content goes, let’s be clear – Netflix doesn’t have every single TV show and movie on the planet, nor do they have the latest episode of every
single show. They do, however, have some original content like House of Cards, Marvel’s Daredevil and Bloodline (with Aussie Ben Mendelsohn) and a bunch of other original programming on the way supported by a great range of library titles like The Matrix. Where it gets tricky is that as this is all very new to Australia, some rights to shows like Homeland have been sold to Aussie TV networks, who get the first run and then Netflix takes over from there.
For the full interview grab the April 2015 issue of MAXIM, in stores from March 19 to April 15.
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