Netflix is adding a new feature that it hopes will help subscribers decide what to watch. They are hoping this update will remove the indecision from viewers and instead allow for a more structured approach to their content.
The new feature is tentatively called Shuffle Play and was tested for months prior to Netflix’s Q4 earnings presentation this past Tuesday. Essentially, this new feature would allow a user to click a button and have Netflix choose the next show or movie in the queue rather than the user sifting through the content catalog on their own. If you’re anything like most people, you’re probably acutely aware of how painfully long-winded a “what should we watch next” discussion can become. There is so much content across so many services; it can get overwhelming really quickly. Having the decision made for you does have a certain amount of upside.
Currently the Netflix is called “Play Something,” but Netflix COO Greg Peters doesn’t expect that name to stick around past the initial testing phase. He said, “It’s really working for us where our members can basically indicate to us that they just want to skip browsing entirely, click one button and we’ll pick a title for them to instantly play…And that’s a great mechanism that has worked quite well for members in that situation.” Peters seems optimistic about the feature’s performance, and it will be exciting to see if “Shuffle Play” is something we end up relying on when logging into Netflix after a taxing day. I’m betting it just might happen. If his response is anything to go by, expect the feature to be available sooner rather than later.
Netflix helped pave the way for services such as Disney+, Hulu, CBS All-Access, and HBO Max. It stands to reason, then, that it would strive to stay ahead of its competitors in some respects. Now, there’s a fun (and incredibly helpful) new way for Netflix subscribers to play their favorite content without the arduous process of actually choosing it in the moment.
This addition could benefit subscribers in two notable ways, the first being that it may expose picky or discerning viewers to new content they would not have stumbled upon otherwise. Hooray for expanding your horizons! The second (and perhaps more immediately useful) is that it could help categorically busy people, such as parents, teachers, etc., waste less time deciding what to watch before or after work.
You can expect the Shuffle Play feature to be available for everyone sometime during the first half of this year. No concrete date has been set yet, but if that release window is reasonable and accurate, then we can expect something more solid very soon. This new feature, coupled with the recent price hike of a monthly subscription, has marked some big changes for Netflix. Let’s hope those changes pay off and lead to even more incredible content from the streamer.
Until then, keep your eyes peeled for exciting new shows and movies coming to the service, including an insanely popular Wesley Snipes flick! There is a ton hitting Netflix (and pretty much every other streaming service) in February so make sure you stay up to date! There is likely never going to be a dearth of streaming content.