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Netflix's Wii rollout begins

After just a few months waiting, Netflix sends Instant Streaming discs for the Nintendo Wii to some subscribers. An official launch is forthcoming.

Netflix Instant Streaming is finally on its way to the Wii. Netflix

Starting on Friday, owners of all three major game consoles can stream content from Netflix.

Netflix, which in January announced plans to bring its streaming movies and television shows to the Nintendo Wii, on Thursday announced that it has started shipping instant-streaming discs to Nintendo Wii owners.

As part of the "final phase" of Netflix's Wii plans, the company has shipped its instant-streaming disc to "some" of the folks that requested it. In an e-mail sent to those subscribers, Netflix said they should be receiving their discs on Friday.

Netflix expects to use the feedback it gains from those users to improve issues with the service prior to its official launch.

The addition of Netflix streaming to the Nintendo Wii completes the video rental company's plan to bring its service to every major video game console. Netflix Instant Streaming was originally available only on Microsoft's Xbox 360--the only console that doesn't require a Netflix disc to access the company's streaming service.

When Netflix shipped the instant-streaming discs to Sony PlayStation 3 owners in November, the company followed a similar strategy. It announced on its blog at that time that it would ship only 100,000 discs to subscribers to judge feedback and work out any kinks still in the service. Just five days later, it announced that the service was available for all PS3 owners.

Unfortunately, Netflix didn't provide many details on the Wii rollout. In an e-mailed comment, a company representative said Netflix wouldn't divulge how many discs were shipped. And although users will have access to its streaming service as soon as they pop the disc into the Wii, the representative wouldn't say when Netflix streaming would officially launch to all Wii users.

"We have not announced a full launch; however, it will be soon," the representative wrote in an e-mail.

Users looking to stream movies and television shows from Netflix's service to the Wii will need to sign up for one of the company's unlimited plans, which start at $8.99 a month. Once complete, they can request a free streaming disc from the company.