News


December 2008

Netflix service cancelled, and why. Details

6/26/2008:

As of June 2008, there is now improved delivery service to Laramie . Details

3/25/2008:

Netflix down for most of Monday, 3/24/2008. Apology email and compensation sent. Details

January 2008

Netflix gives customers unlimited online viewing! Details



I'm a movie buff; not big-time, but I like watching movies.  In 2007 I decided to start using Netflix to rent movies over the net--I collected data on the movies I rented and kept it in an Excel file.

The type of data I collected for each of the 65 movies I rented throughout the year was:

I had figured that this was the type of data that Neflix might like to see: data about delivery times for an entire year for a specific town. I was going to send this Excel file to Netflix but alas they advertise no general email address to which I could attach such a file so I just decided to create a web page instead.

General Opinion of Netflix

In general, I really like the service.  For me, I chose their 1-movie-at-a-time option, which is plenty often for me to rent a movie (about 5 movies per month).  I also like that when they receive a movie back in the mail, they notify you via email.  And they also send you an email when they've shipped the next movie (95% of the time, this occurs on the same day).

Midway through 2007, they improved their service in two ways: (1) they reduced the rate of the 1-movie-at-a-time from $9.99 to $8.99 per month; (2) they began a service where you could watch a limited selection of movies/TV shows online on your computer. Both winning ideas. And, in January of 2008, online viewing became unlimited for all but the lowest service level (see the news page for more details about this).

Movie Viewer:

The Netflix online movie viewer comes in the form of a plug-in for Internet Explorer (6 or later) which you must install.  The viewer does not work with other browsers such as Firefox at this time.  However, the viewer plug-in within IE, AXPlayer, is superb in my opinion. You can resize your browser window to any size, or view the content in full-screen mode. The software is smart about keeping track of how much content you've actually viewed so if you want you can skip parts of a movie and only watch what you want to (of course, this doesn't really matter with unlimited viewing).

At any rate, I'll likely continue subscribing to the service because it's cheap per movie and fairly convenient (movies don't get delivered to my door like they advertise; instead, they come to a US Mail "kiosk" which is about a block and a half away).

2007 Executive Summary, Graph and Excel File

My ratings

Of the 65 movies I rented in 2007, out of 10 stars I gave no movie a "10" and no movie a "1". Here's the breakdown of the rest of my ratings:

Rating

# of Movies

9
8
9
7
11
6
19
5
9
4
8
3
4
2

The three movies that I rated a "9" were: The Alien Saga, Deja Vu, and Stranger Than Fiction.  The two movies earning only a "2" were: Borat and Vacancy.

Shipping/Delivery Data

I live in Laramie, Wyoming; the nearest Netflix distribution site is in Denver, about 100 miles away.

In 2007 (all time includes weekend days):

 

Here's a scatter graph showing the delivery data visually:

ScatterGraph Chart showing netflix shipping and receiving data

You can download the Excel file containing all my data here.