gadget lust: Netflix Player

The Netflix Player by Roku

I know I shouldn’t even give it a second glance, but my gadgetlust has really been aroused over the new Netflix Player from Roku, $99. The last item I had of theirs was a SoundBridge and it worked flawlessly until it got fried by a power issue. It does have the “one more box” failing, I admit, and it only does one thing, so I might be better off waiting until people have had it for a while and discover hacks for it. Other drawbacks are that Netflix doesn’t deliver online movies in HD quality nor do they offer closed captioning which bugs me because most all of the video players support it, they’ve just been too lazy (or deemed it not cost effective) to develop it into their service.

I’m just not the Home Theater PC (HTPC) kinda guy. I’m a tabletop computer user, not a laptop one. I like my keyboard and mouse on a desk or table while seated in a chair with some support, not trying to deal with a wireless all-in-one device from my overly comfy and cushy couch. My PC can do all that this Netflix player can, but the PC is mainly for the games that simply aren’t available for my Mac (and also to serve as a bedroom tv). Unfortunately since many of those games have completely failed to hold my interest, I’ve been a lot more into watching tv and movies and actually making a wee bit of progress on my Netflix Queue. I almost wish Netflix had a “trusted friend” type of relationship you could place on accounts which would allow people to more than suggest a movie but actually send it to your queue at an appropriate number of movies back.

I tend to miss a lot of movies in the theater. Either I just can’t be bothered with the “experience” or they’re limited engagement or I don’t get a sloppy seconds invite: “I’ve already seen it but I’ll see it again with you.” I also admit to an extreme lack of interest in some films, which I later rent at home and am pleasantly surprised. I’m not a musicals person at all, but “Sweeney Todd” was pretty great. Since getting the new TV, seeing movies at home is fun again. I still have the low attention span thing, but with a pause button, there’s no such thing as too many trips to the kitchen or bathroom and nobody minds when I whip out my cell phone in the middle of the film. 😛

I’m budgeted right now for a new pair of iPhone headphones, so perhaps this will have to wait a month or two. People are calling it an Apple TV killer and I don’t buy that, but there are some that would go the Apple route and others that are already Netflix members that wouldn’t bother. This device is for the “other guys”.

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5 Responses

  1. pyack says:

    you need to write me a check now. if it weren’t for you, i wouldn’t be buying this box. damn you brian!

  2. Brian says:

    That’s the problem with gadget lust, it’s easily communicable and only detrimental to our wallets.

    I’m still pondering telling Netflix they need to pony up some discount codes to people who’ve had accounts for-friggin-ever. Still, as gadgets go, it’s not too bad of a price. I haven’t done the math on shipping costs, if any.

  3. Al-F says:

    Boys and their toys…no matter how old we get, we always want something new to play with! In one day, I will have exchanged my DVR cable box for one that this HDMI ready, and purchased an HDMI DVD player. Stop the insanity!

  4. Brian says:

    Child, who you tellin’? My downfall was getting the new HDTV. Had to replace my TiVo & RCN cable box with a HD-capable RCN DVR box. Then I upgraded to a TiVo HD w/CableCard to replace the RCN HD-DVR box. I have gone through many iterations of “what can I connect to the tv now?” before trying to settle on an entertainment setup that is both compact and easy.

    I think I’m giving up on “compact”.

  5. Gregory says:

    Great! Just as I finally signed up for a NetFlix trial you go and shove this in my face! :-p

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