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Netflix targets the family demographic

August 16, 2011 | 12:18 pm

Netflix_1313518640247 Netflix, in a bid to better appeal to families, has made kids the first demographic to get its own section on the company's website.

The new "Just for Kids" tab on Netflix.com features animated and family-friendly live action television shows and movies including "Phineas & Ferb," "Avatar: The Last Airbender" and numerous "The Land Before Time" films.

Previously Netflix has featured just content that its computer algorithms suggest users will like based on what they have previously watched and rated.

Highlighting editorially-selected content for kids is a sign of the company's maturing user base, as Netflix is no longer appealing just to tech-savvy young people but also to families who are increasingly watching video on computers, Internet-connected televisions and smartphones.

Netflix said that nearly half of its approximately 25 million members have streamed at least two movies or TV shows aimed at kids in the last 90 days.

The "Just for Kids" section features only streaming video content, not DVDs that can be shipped in the mail. It's another sign that the company is attempting to steer customers toward digital subscriptions and away from DVDs. The front page of Netflix.com already features streaming-content only, while DVDs are featured on the last of five tabs.

The move comes as Netflix recently announced a controversial change in its pricing plans that hikes rates as much as 60% for people who stream movies and get one DVD per month in the mail. The company now charges $7.99 per month for unlimited Internet streaming and $7.99 or more to get DVDs through the mail.

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-- Ben Fritz

Photo: Netflix's new "Just for Kids" section on its website.

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