Even thought Netflix's subscription rate continues to spiral downwards, we still happen to think it is the best streaming service around. Mainly because we appreciate the selection and general design of Netflix over the competitors and not so much because of the questionable business moves. But there are still some features we think are missing from Netflix's offerings. Thankfully there are 3rd party sites which supplement the Instant Watch feature which we continue to use and has made our experience that much better. So if you weren't one of the many who have recently dumped Netflix in wake of their poor business decisions, check them out after the jump.
First, we just happened to notice on Netflix's own site the inclusion of a date when the instant watch movie was scheduled to be taken down. We have to admit that we don't know how old this feature is since we typically use the iPhone/iPad to add movies into our queue. But if you were to go to the info page for the video, that date will be displayed right underneath the actors/director/description information. We recommend taking that date and plugging it into your calendar (we use iCal) so you get a week reminder before it leaves the Instant Watch program.
When we don't have any idea what we'd like to watch, we often click over to Instant Watcher which will show us the most popular videos on Instant Watch at any given time. You can also browse by genre if you have a particular style in mind. Another very helpful site is FeedFliks which will tell you what Netflix videos are set to arrive on Instant Watcher. Thinking about buying a DVD soon? Maybe you should check FeedFliks first and you just might be able to save your money and wait until it is available for "free" from Netflix.
WhichFlicks is another great way to discover movies to watch since we've always felt Netflix's own browsing features weren't satisfying enough. Filter your searches by genre, date, audience, people, and ratings. WhichFlicks doesn't just work for Netflix either. You can use it to search a variety of video streaming sources incase you're a subscriber to more than one.