Xbox 360 hack lets owners play Netflix movies

Forget waiting for Netflix and Microsoft to make it official. Xbox 360 owners can turn the console into a Roku competitor.

People aren't waiting for Microsoft to announce a deal with Netflix.

Someone has already figured out how to hack the Xbox 360 video game console and enable it to play Netflix streaming movies.

At Lifehacker.com, Adam Pash writes that all anyone needs is an Xbox 360, a Windows Vista PC, a Netflix account, and a free Windows Media Center plug-in called vmcNetflix.

Here is some of what Pash says an Xbox 360 owner can do following the hack: stream Watch Now movies directly to the Media Center player; download Watch Now movies to a "Watch Later" gallery; search for movies by keyword; browse DVDs; Watch Now movies by genre; and add, remove, and move movies in your queue.

Of course, this is more functionality than the $100 Netflix Box offers. Roku has received favorable reviews for streaming movies from the Web to television sets without long delays and at a reasonable price.

Soon, a hack may be unnecessary. Rumors are that Microsoft will announce this year that it has cut a deal to deliver Netlix's Watch Now service on the Xbox.

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Tech Culture
About the author

Greg Sandoval covers media and digital entertainment for CNET News. Based in New York, Sandoval is a former reporter for The Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times. E-mail Greg, or follow him on Twitter at @sandoCNET.

 

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