July 10, 2007, 12:00 AM

Instant viewing takes off at Netflix

Heralding another Internet trend, online DVD rental service Netflix reports 5 million viewings in its first six months of offering movie and TV content for instant access over the web.

Heralding another Internet trend, online DVD rental service Netflix Inc. reports 5 million viewings in its first six months of offering movie and TV content for instant access over the web.

In January, Netflix, No. 18 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, introduced the new feature that allows subscribers to start watching a movie or TV episode on their PCs in as little as 30 seconds after clicking a tab on Netflix.com. Viewers can watch an entire movie at once, or watch parts of it at different times, a spokesman says.

Netflix subscribers can choose from a growing library of 2,000 titles that are available for instant watching. Among the most popular titles for instant watching are the American TV series "The Office" and the films "The Matrix," "The Prince and Me," "Super Size Me," "The Sum of All Fears," "Jackass: The Movie," and "Sherrybaby." Netflix is adding more titles every day with the goal of providing 5,000 titles for instant watching by the end of the year, it says.

Netflix makes instant viewing at no extra charge for limited amounts of time based on the subscriber’s level of service.

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