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Netflix comes to Android

For the last year and a half, I have been a big fan of Netflix and their streaming service. Slowly Netflix added devices that could support their services, from consoles like the Wii, XBox360 and the PS3 to the iPad to mobile devices including the iPhone and Windows Phone 7. Finally, Android has been added to the list of devices that can stream movies and television programs and can be downloaded from the Android Market.

Last November, Netflix employees expounded upon the possibility an Android app last November, saying it wouldn’t happen because of Android is “too fragmented and insecure.” Which is why it was a big surprise to see on Twitter a link to the Netflix blog announcing the arrival of Netflix on Android, or at least on five Android devices. From Netflix’s website:

* The Netflix app runs on these phones:
1. HTC Incredible with Android 2.2
2. HTC Nexus One with Android 2.2, 2.3
3. HTC Evo 4G with Android 2.2
4. HTC G2 with Android 2.2
5. Samsung Nexus S with Android 2.3.

As most of the comments attest to on the blog post, people want it on their assorted Droid phones and Droid tablets. Of course, with the openness of the Android operating system comes the potential of interesting hacking. One such enterprising hacker used his rooted phone to figure out how to install it on his Android phone and shared how to do it on reddit.  If your phone is rooted, you can follow the directions below. Be sure to back up, just in case and you may want to read some of the comments in that reddit thread.

  • 0 ) Root is required. Make a Nandroid backup! (I accidentally deleted by build.prop file and bootlooped my phone)
  • 1 ) Download ES File Explorer (Or any other root file editor)
  • 2 ) In ES File Explorer, go into Setting > Root Settings and enable both check boxes
  • 3 ) Navigate to /system/ and copy/paste build.prop to /sdcard/ (just in case)
  • 4 ) Open & edit /system/build.prop
  • 5 ) Change the following lines to make your phone think it is a HTC G2:

ro.product.model=HTC Vision



ro.product.model=Nexus S


  • 6 ) Reboot the phone
  • 7 ) Install the netflix apk (if you haven’t already)
  • 8 ) Enjoy

As much as I am looking forward to trying Netflix on my Droid, I have yet to attempt to install it. I look forward to being able to watch my movies and television on the go on my phone, it’s just unfortunate that Netflix chose to limit it to five devices instead of being available cross platform.

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