An early Christmas present from Netflix
1 December 2016 by Thomas Utting
Netflix has given its users an early Christmas present this week by rolling out offline playback for smartphones and tablets. That means that your favourite shows can be downloaded to your phone or tablet so that they can be watched at any time, even when not connected to the internet.
Whether you spend a long time on the train each day commuting to work or are looking to keep your children occupied on car journeys, this new feature is likely to be well-received by all Netflix users. In the past, watching Netflix has been difficult whilst travelling due to unreliable internet access or concerns over data usage. However, these concerns are expected to be a thing of the past as people start to make use of offline playback.
The service is currently in the process of being rolled out but should be available on almost all Android and iOS devices (if you don’t have it yet, try updating your Netflix app) and better yet, it’s being offered at no extra cost.
Not every show is currently available for download, however many of its popular shows such as Orange is the New Black and The Crown are already available. Netflix will also helpfully categorise all of the downloadable content for you so that you can easily see what is available for offline playback. The service is also incredibly simple to use, with a ‘Download’ button being added to the details page for a show.
This announcement has come as somewhat of a surprise, as Netflix has been resistant to the idea of offline viewing in the past, once even going so far as to state that they will never offer such a feature. Perhaps the rising popularity of Amazon’s video service that is bundled with its Amazon Prime membership has caused Netflix to reconsider their position. Regardless of the reason, the new feature is likely to receive a warm welcome from all Netflix users.
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