Netflix just used the quiet Friday afternoon to announce that it is effectively ending its public developer program. Netflix will stop issuing API keys immediately and will not accept new API affiliates. The company will no longer offer a test environment for developer and its developer portal is already set to be read-only. Netflix’s OData catalog, which was never updated all that regularly in the first place, will be retired a month from now on April 8.
The only good news for developers here is that applications that are currently actively calling the API will remain active, so services like instantwatcher.com, Goodfilms and CanIStream.itm which all either use data from Netflix or offer integration with the service, will likely remain online for the time being. Netflix did not say for how long it plans to support its current public API.
The company says these ‘changes,’ as the company calls them, “are designed to allow us to focus our API efforts on supporting the products and features used most by our members.” Its API program, Netflix argues, has “shifted over the past few years” and is now more about supporting all of the devices that are used by its 33 million members to stream shows and movies.
Here is a list of all the changes the company announced today:
We will no longer issue new public API developer keys. All existing keys that are actively calling the API will remain active.
We will no longer accept new API affiliates. There will be no impact to existing and active affiliates.
We will no longer offer test environments. The test tools have been unavailable for a while and we won’t bring them back.
We will set the forums in the developer portal to read-only. We encourage developers to continue their conversations at StackOverflow with the tag “netflixapi”. The existing forum posts will remain on the site for now in the form of an archive.
We will retire the OData catalog, effective on April 8, 2013.