Netflix Introduces Downloads for Offline Viewing
"While many members enjoy watching Netflix at home, we’ve often heard they also want to continue their 'Stranger Things' binge while on airplanes and other places where internet is expensive or limited," the company said.
Netflix said Wednesday that its subscribers worldwide will now have access to a much requested new feature, downloading content for offline viewing.
The feature, which will be offered as a alternative to streaming content using an internet connection, comes at no extra cost.
"While many members enjoy watching Netflix at home, we’ve often heard they also want to continue their Stranger Things binge while on airplanes and other places where internet is expensive or limited," Eddy Wu, director of product innovation said in a blog post. "Just click the download button on the details page for a film or TV series and you can watch it later without an internet connection."
Offline viewing will not be immediately available for all programs. Netflix says the feature is already enabled for Orange Is the New Black, Narcos and The Crown, with more movies and series on the way.
The feature is included in all plans and available for phones and tablets on Android and iOS.
Downloadable content is a benefit that many other streaming services already provide. Rival Amazon introduced offline viewing in September 2015, making it possible for subscribers to its Prime Video offering to download some originals and licensed movies and TV shows. Starz has offered downloads of nearly 100 percent of its library since launching its standalone subscription service in April 2016.
For Netflix, which has been undergoing a large international push since January and has nearly 87 million subscribers worldwide, offline viewing makes its service more accessible in countries where bandwidth is often lower.