Netflix has introduced a new user interface interface geared towards kids on the Sony Playstation 3. As first reported by Hacking Netflix, the new interface is now a choice when you start Netflix on the PS3. “Just for Kids” only shows selected movies and TV shows suitable for children. In another words, you won’t see anything here that would embarrass you in front of your mother.
Since the PS3 uses Netflix’s HTML5 user interface, the update was delivered without the need for a software upgrade. Netflix stated on its Q4 2011 conference call that the service would introduce the concept of different user profiles and tailor content to each member of the household in 2012. Only showing content appropriate to children was the example given by Netflix on the call. However, there’s nothing stopping a child from flipping back to the old interface with the press of one button. Hopefully, we’ll see a better version of Netflix’s parental controls introduced later this year as well.
Interestingly enough, the “Just for Kids” interface just doesn’t present a filtered view of content, it also provides different user interface elements. In particular, it’s simply a list of scrolling titles with pop-ups providing a brief synopsis . It’s similar to the Wii and the Roku but more polished looking. The interface for browsing episodes of a TV series is very different with thumbnails of each episode laid out in a grid (see screen shot below).
By the way, my young daughter gives the new “Just for Kids” interface the thumbs up over the current Netflix interface on the PS3.