Netflix is adding roughly 2,500 titles from Starz Entertainment to its “Watch Instantly” streaming service. The deal gives Netflix subscribers paying at least $8.99 a month access to content from the Starz Play broadband service as part of their subscription.
Though lacking in new releases, the Starz arrangement is nice shot in the arm for the Netflix service, which has been dinged for its dearth of decent content since it’s launch. It’s also the second major deal in as many weeks, with Netflix announcing it would get TV shows from CBS and The Disney Channel. All the recent additions will boost Netflix’s content library to more than 15,000 titles.
One thousand of those Starz movies are available now, including Spider-Man 3, Ratatouille and No Country for Old Men. The upcoming Starz drama series Crash, based on the Oscar-winning movie, will also be available.
This isn’t just good news for Netflix subscribers, but for Starz and Netflix set-top box partners as well. Starz Play arose from the ashes of Vongo, Starz’s failed previous attempt at a broadband movie service. Starz Play is also offered as a download service through Verizon.
And while the Netflix catalog isn’t exactly bursting at the seams, the deal gives people 2,500 new reasons to pick up the Roku, or buy the Netflix-enabled LG Blu-Ray player, or purchase an Xbox Live gold membership (which will offer Netflix streaming).
In other Netflix news, Netflix opened up its API today. The Netflix API is free, allows commercial use and is open to anyone at http://developer.netflix.com.