Some ideas for Netflix

I’ve been a Netflix subscriber since the beginning. I also have owned their stock for ages as well, but the story about that is for some other time. They do some things really well, but in some ways they do some really dumb things and also are missing some opportunities. Here’s some thoughts:

Movie Reviews
At one point, whenever I gave a star rating to a movie, a little box came up and asked for a short review. This review popped up on facebook along with my rating. This was good. It wasn’t great. But it was the start of taking all that movie review data and adding a social aspect to it. Interestingly, Netflix had (still has) a second review system in place where you can type a review and other Netflix subscribers can see it. Unlike the short review box, this one is moderated and is far from instant. Not good at all. And worse? They discontinued the FB integration and removed the short reviews entirely. Why? Who knows?

So what should happen here? First off, Netflix has to realize that they have a golden opportunity to become the ‘Yelp’ of movies and tv shows. Most Netflix users are compulsive about rating things (since it improves their recommendations) and they are reminded to do it after every movie return. Netflix should make it very easy to post movie reviews. They should bring back the FB integration and add Twitter and others as well. Make it the users option to publicly say ‘hey, I just watched this film, check it out on Netflix’. Netflix members also need to have some kind of public facing identity, a profile page with all the users reviews and recommendations, etc.

User Accounts

This is a no-brainer and I can’t figure out why this idea has been given so little love. Allow one household account to have separate users! Each user should get a queue and a login and a profile, etc.

Right now this is sort of allowed: I can add users to my account and they share in my 3 disks a month (1 goes to my girlfriends queue and 2 to mine) but there are many issues with it. First off, they don’t have the ability to set their passwords and thier accounts don’t work on their devices. (My girlfriend has an iPad but to use it she needs my logon info. Lame). Secondly, these ‘profiles’ can’t be removed, even with a phone call to Netflix. So my ex has a profile still listed in my account. Why?

The Queue

How stupid is this? I search for a movie and once I find it I have to decide which queue to put it in : watch now? or Send to me?. Why do I have to choose this? Why are there two queues? Why not one queue? When I add to my queue it should be set to send me a DVD but also show up on my devices as an instant view (if available). I can’t explain how stupid this looks to the average user. Also, make it easy to export from and import to the queue. I have a huge list, I want to maintain it myself or add stuff in bulk. Let me.

Super Add
I’m at the movie theater and I see some previews before my flick. There should be a way to easily add what I see here to my queue. Make an app (or add ot the netflix app) that will allow me to point my phone cam at the preview and have it figure out the movie and add it to my queue. How cool would that be? So when the movie comes out I can get it.

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