Content-streamer Netflix has launched a new feature for Android users that will now allow them to view partially downloaded titles. This is expected to come in handy for people caught in situations of unreliable wifi or a maxed out data plan. They can now make do what has been downloaded till then.
Hitherto, any streaming content on Netflix needed to be completely finished downloading to a device before it could be viewed.
"We’ve improved the Netflix download experience so you can now start watching The Mitchells vs The Machines or the next episode of Luis Miguel - The Series even if it hasn’t completed downloading. Once you’ve regained a strong enough connection, you can choose to finish the download and keep watching — avoiding those surprise notices that you’ve gone over your data limits," Netflix said in a blog post.
Users can find the setting in the Continue Watching section of the service or from the Download menu.
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Partial downloading for iOS devices in 'coming months'
Netflix unveiled its 'Smart Downloads' feature in 2016. It ensures that the next episode in the series that one is watching is downloaded. It also deletes an episode once the user has seen it.
Netflix had said that the feature was launched keeping countries like India in mind. Users from India are among the highest downloaders on Netflix. But in India internet in some places can get really sucky. So this new partial download feature will be a big advantage. Netflix expects this new feature to take off in countries like India.
"We always want to make it easier for members to access their favorite series or movies regardless of language, device, connectivity, or location. So partial downloading is now available on Android phones and tablets, and we’ll begin testing on iOS in the coming months," Netflix said.