updated 01:35 pm EDT, Thu June 19, 2008
Neflix Drops Multi Queues
Netflix is dropping support for multiple queues per account on its movie rental service, the company says in a message sent to subscribers overnight and picked up by Ars Technica. The company plans to drop its Profile Queue feature as of September 1st and will merge all the queues into one, preventing users from individualizing their queues for individual family members and potentially interfering with recommendations. The move is meant to "improve the Netflix website," according to the company, though its plans are unclear.
The company does say it intends to e-mail users details about each individual queue before the merger takes place, allowing them to insert movies back into the main queue without affecting any upcoming rentals; while histories will be kept, any upcoming rentals will be erased at the time.
Netflix' move has already drawn some controversy from users, who charge that the rental company is making the move to push customers to more expensive subscriptions in order to maintain the same customization as they have today. Netflix hasn't yet addressed such criticism but in recent months has been gradually shifting focus to its Watch Instantly feature, which lets users play an unlimited number of movies on the web or through a Roku player as long as they have a $9 or better monthly plan.