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by Jason Snell & Dan Moren

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Netflix begins to roll out games

Netflix will begin to roll out games to its subscribers worldwide starting tomorrow:

Ash Parrish at The Verge has more detail:

Users will be able to choose from one of five games: Stranger Things: 1984, Stranger Things 3: The Game_, Shooting Hoops, Card Blast, and Teeter Up. Starting today, users can download Netflix games from the Google Play store, requiring a Netflix subscription to play. Then on November 3rd, Netflix will begin rolling out games to the app itself. When on a mobile device, Netflix Games will come packaged in its own dedicated row and have a dedicated tab.

You may be asking yourself, “How does Netflix think this will be ‘on the way’ on iOS given Apple’s app store policies that even Microsoft couldn’t get around?”

I think Steve Troughton-Smith’s tweet has this right:

If Netflix wants to be on iOS, it will almost certainly submit every game to the App Store on its own, and then you’ll connect them to your Netflix subscription in order to play them. (I imagine the Netflix app itself will gain links to those apps, but that the apps themselves will be delievered via the App Store.)

That all would seem to be within the letter of the App Store guidelines, but of course, there’s nothing stopping Apple (except publicity and regulatory scrutiny!) from amending its rules or its interpretation of those rules in order to make things harder for Netflix.

As a Netflix subscriber, do I really want games from Netflix? I can’t say that I do. It feels to me like a bit of a stretch for Netflix’s brand. But we live in an era where big tech companies are trying to take over every possible aspect of entertainment in our lives. I already read Amazon ebooks and watch Apple TV shows. Play Netflix games? Eh, sure, maybe.

—Linked by Jason Snell

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