Netflix Movie Streaming

Hacking Netflix has a video clip of the new Netflix feature that I am not lucky enough to have (yet): streaming movies. Despite what the New York Time’s says, I think Netflix is poised to continue their success. They’re smart enough to have known that DVD-based distribution has a limited life span and that online distribution will be huge. They’ve come to the market early with a huge subscriber base, and there’s no reason they won’t perfect online distribution just as they perfected mail-based DVD distribution.
It was obvious (and preannounced) that Netflix would have some sort of online offering this year, but I do find the pricing format interesting. In the same way that $0.99 gets you a great – or a horrible – song on iTunes, Netflix seems to have streaming minutes that all cost the same. A good minute is the same as a bad one, but a per minute charge is nice you end up disliking a movie. This could even change attitudes about the home movie walk-out. (I have a hard time stopping a bad movie because I feel like I’ve invested something in it. That feeling could be reversed if it was costing me to continue watching.)
I have to wonder whether Netflix royalties will be paid on a per minute basis too. If they were, and the Netflix market was big enough, longer movies would actually be worth more per viewing. I assume the industry currently prefers short movies whenever possible, as they can have more showings in theaters.