Netflix’s “Instant Watching” feature allows subscribers to the movies-by-mail service to skip the wait and stream movies directly to their PCs or Macs. The service uses Microsoft’s Silverlight technology to provide the streams, not only because of its ability to work cross-platform, but also because it offers DVD-player like controls for starting and stopping movies as well as a great timeline feature that improves the fast-forwarding and rewinding experience. Silverlight’s Play Ready technology protects the content, too, while delivering dynamic streaming based on users’ connection speeds.
Now, according to the Hacking Netflix blog, the site is streaming more than half its HD titles to both Mac and PC. At last! To see if the title you want is available in HD, mouse over it and look for the words “HD available” in the Format section, advises the blog post. You can find all the HD movies available here on Netflix’s website (login required). Some users report they’re not seeing this option yet, which implies a staged rollout, so keep checking.