Video streaming giant Netflix (NFLX) is changing the way its user interface appears when viewed through some set-top boxes, Internet-connected TVs and popular gaming consoles.
A company official calls it the “biggest change to the Netflix experience on televisions in our history.” The redesigned interface adds more thumbnail images of movies and TV shows, along with information about TV episodes and reasons why individual titles are being recommended to a subscriber, the Associated Press notes.
Netflix will also show a list of a subscriber’s Facebook (FB) friends who have watched a given title — if the subscriber has opted to link their Netflix and Facebook accounts.
The altered interface is part of a strategy to position Netflix as a competitor to traditional cable TV channels
Subscribers who watch Netflix through the company’s website, older set top boxes, or through the Apple (AAPL) TV streaming box, will not see a change to the interface. Those who view the service through Sony’s (SNE) Playstation and Microsoft’s (MSFT) Xbox gaming consoles, smart TVs, Internet-capable Blu-Ray players or the Roku 3 set top box will begin seeing the new interface this week. The full rollout of the changes is expected to take about two weeks.
Shares of Netflix fell modestly in Wednesday morning trading.
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