So far, most of the apps that come with, or can be downloaded, for Windows 8 have left us cold. “People” is awful, and most of the third-party apps are basic and uninspiring. But today at the Windows 8 launch in New York, we’ve seen the newly released Netflix app, and we’re impressed.
This is the first showcase of what the Modern UI is capable of that has made us excited by the platform. Of course, Netflix suits a full-screen environment more than, say, a web browser does, because you’ll generally be giving it all of your attention while using it, rather than looking at Netflix while messing about with something else - although Windows 8’s screen dividing options should allow you to use Netflix while, say, tweeting or chatting in Skype.
As you would expect, the interface is very similar to that of the Netflix online offering. Large images give you access to a wide selection of movies and TV shows. There’s a lovely drop-down interface too, which appears when you click the Netflix logo on the left of the screen. You can access genres from this as well as new releases.
We only saw a flash of content, but we know from past experience that HD streaming from Netflix is excellent, and we saw that here today, too. The Walking Dead image quality looked top-notch, and the app is incredibly responsive.
So colour us impressed. This could be the start of Windows 8 getting some respect and traction, even with those who are current sceptical.