Netflix gets kid-friendly as it raises US prices

Posted Aug. 16, 2011, at 6:34 p.m.
Last modified Aug. 16, 2011, at 8 p.m.
In this screen shot provided by Netflix Inc., the home page for &quotJust For Kids," is displayed. Netflix Inc. is giving kids and their parents a new reason to embrace its Internet video subscription service as it raises prices to the dismay of many customers.
AP Photo/Netflix Inc.
In this screen shot provided by Netflix Inc., the home page for "Just For Kids," is displayed. Netflix Inc. is giving kids and their parents a new reason to embrace its Internet video subscription service as it raises prices to the dismay of many customers.

SAN FRANCISCO — Netflix Inc. is giving kids and their parents a new reason to embrace its Internet video subscription service as it raises prices to the dismay of many customers.

A “Just For Kids” tab has been added to subscribers’ accounts on Netflix’s website. Clicking on the feature will pull up a list of kid-friendly recommendations drawn from about 1,000 movies and TV shows in Netflix’s Internet video streaming library.

It won’t suggest titles that are only available as DVD rentals delivered through the mail. That’s an option that Netflix is trying to make less enticing to subscribers so it can save postage and spend more money expanding its selection of video streaming options.

As part of its de-emphasis on DVDs, Netflix last month announced that it will unbundle the unlimited video streaming option from its most popular plans with disc rentals. Beginning Sept. 1, Netflix’s 24.6 million U.S. subscribers who want DVDs and unlimited streaming will have to buy the plans separately. The change will translate into a rate hike of up to 60 percent, or $6 per month for those getting one DVD at a time. Tens of thousands of subscribers have posted angry comments on the Internet promising to close their Netflix accounts in protest.

The children’s feature grew out of Netflix’s recognition that its video streaming service is making it easier for kids to watch movies on a variety of devices at almost any time and any place with a high-speed Internet connection. The video can be streamed through video game consoles, the iPad tablet computer and smartphones. Netflix makes it even easier by allowing several people from the same household to stream through the same account.

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