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Netflix offers streaming-only option, bumps DVD plan up

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In an announcement that coincides with the release of AirPlay-equipped iOS 4.2, Netflix is offering a streaming-only video plan for $7.99 a month, the same as the new Hulu Plus price.

Of course, Apple TV already includes Netflix so AirPlay doesn’t offer a real advantage here, but at least it’s cheaper to sign up for Netflix now. For all you chumps still spinning optical media (like me), you (and me) get hit with a price bump of $1 to $8. Folks on the 2 DVD per month plan remain unaffected (undoubtedly because $4.99 is already too much for 2 DVDs per month).

Aside from iOS devices, the lower-priced streaming-only plan also benefits folks who use computers that lack optical drives, such as owners of netbooks, slate-style tablets, and the Macbook Air, as their primary video players.

Despite the price bump, I believe I will stick with the 1 DVD + streaming plan. As convenient as streaming is, it still does not match the variety of their DVD library, and I primarily watch video on my TV connected to my Windows Media Center (which has an optical drive). $2 more for upwards of 4 DVDs a month is worthwhile to me (could go higher, but I don’t watch more than one per week).

Alleged Apple fanboi, accused Android apologist, and confirmed Microsoft MVP for touch and tablet Mark Sumimoto a.k.a. Sumocat dabbles in all areas of mobile computing with a focus on Windows-based Tablet PCs and pen input. A mobile computing enthusiast since 2004, he pioneered the field of ink blogging via his personal blog, Sumocat's Scribbles. His current tools include a Fujitsu Lifebook T900, TEGA v2, and iPhone 4. Email: sumocat [at] notebooks.com

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