Netflix, which was reported by some industry wags to be launching limited 1080p hi-def streaming service sometime this year, is now saying it'll stick with 720, but will offer 5.1 surround sound. As for 1080p, well, it'll come, just not as soon as expected. The company told CNET, which originally reported the move was planned, that the service wasn't on its radar for 2010.
The company currently has a small catalog of HD video (about 1,000 titles) available for streaming in 720. It doesn't take a huge leap to imagine Netflix will continue to push its own limits, since both YouTube and Microsoft's Xbox Live--which supports Netflix online streaming--already offer 1080p.
But, when that will happen is, apparently, anybody's guess.
- see this CNET blog post