Netflix in talks to add GTA to its cloud gaming library

Mike Wheatley

As Netflix ponders how to expand its presence in the cloud video gaming space, the company is reportedly developing its first-ever AAA game and discussing a licensing deal that would bring Grand Theft Auto to its gaming library.


The report, from the Wall Street Journal, notes that Netflix is currently conducting a limited beta test of cloud gaming with select customers in Canada and the U.K. It will soon expand this beta test to some U.S. customers.

Through cloud gaming, Netflix makes it possible to play games on any kind of device, including TVs, mobile phones, tablets and media players, without a console or a PC.

The Journal didn’t provide much detail on the nature of the AAA game Netflix is supposedly developing. The term “AAA” is used to describe the biggest and most popular blockbuster video games – titles such as GTA, Fortnite and so on. Such a development would put Netflix into direct competition with major video game studios, in the same way that it competes with Hollywood studios.

Perhaps more exciting is the news that Netflix wants to bring a title from the Grand Theft Auto series to its gaming library. The Journal didn’t say which title it’s looking to license. It could be the current flagship in the series, Grand Theft Auto 5, or Grand Theft Auto Online, which receives regular, ongoing updates, or it could be an older title. It’s also not clear how close Netflix is to coming to an agreement.

"It has discussed plans to release a game within the popular action-adventure series “Grand Theft Auto” from Take-Two Interactive Software through a licensing deal," according to the Journal’s report.

In addition to GTA and its first AAA title, Netflix is also on the verge of releasing mobile games based on some of its most popular TV series, such as Squid Game, Sherlock Holmes, Black Mirror and Extraction.

One possible obstacle for Netflix is that it currently doesn’t provide support for game controllers on smart TVs. With its limited beta test, players are restricted to using their smartphone as a virtual controller.

Older Devices Frozen Out

The gaming developments come as Netflix revealed it’s ending support for a number of older devices, including some Blu-ray media players, some smart Tvs, the PlayStation Vita and PlayStation TV. reported that the official Netflix application stopped working on the affected devices earlier this week. There has been no official announcement from Netflix so it’s impossible to confirm every affected device, but it seems that it mostly pertains to hardware that’s at least 10 years old.

Some older Smart TVs from brands including Hitachi, Panasonic and Sony have been confirmed to no longer support the Netflix app, in addition to at least one older Samsung Blu-ray player. It’s likely that older TV models and media players from other brands are affected too. In addition, the portable Sony PlayStation Vita console and the PlayStation TV Box are also no longer able to use the Netflix app.

Usually, when this kind of thing happens, it’s because the application in question has been updated with new capabilities that must leverage more modern hardware or operating systems that are not available on the older devices. Netflix generally tries to avoid these kinds of purges for as long as it possibly can. The last major purge occurred back in 2019, when the Netflix app stopped working on some older TVs from Samsung, Sony and Vizio, as well as pre-2012 Roku TV devices and others.

For affected users, the only way to continue watching Netflix is to use a more modern device that still supports the app.