Netflix finally rolls out Play Something – and it's coming to Android soon

Netflix Play Something
(Image credit: Netflix)

Netflix has rolled out its Play Something shuffle feature worldwide, which allows you to hit a button when you can't decide what to watch and let the streamer pick something for you. It's available on TV versions of the app worldwide from today, with Netflix planning to test it on Android soon, too, according to Variety

Back in January, Netflix announced the feature would roll out this year at some point. It's previously been called Shuffle Play by the streamer.

Netflix picks what to show you based on your previous streaming choices – so it's not random. You've also got the option to hit a button called Play Something Else, which gets you a brand new series or movie, something you're already watching, a show or movie on your Netflix list, a series you might not have finished, or a movie you might be up for revisiting. 

Here's Netflix's trailer, which explains how it works with the help of actor Will Arnett:

You'll be able to access the feature under your profile name in the app, from the tenth row of your Netflix home screen, or from the app's nav menu. Play Something also supports Text-to-Speech for subscribers who use screen-readers. 

Is shuffle play important for Netflix?

It's a little weird that Netflix is making such a big deal about this feature. Sure, it's novel to hit the button and see what the service might pick for you, but considering the entire app experience is already dictated by suggesting things you might like based on your preferences and viewing history, it doesn't seem like that much of a game-changer to us. 

We can't really see ourselves being in the position to use it, simply because there's always too much that we actually want to watch on Netflix. There's no danger of us running out of content to enjoy. 

Still, it is another way to get more from your subscription fee – and getting it working wasn't a small feat for Netflix. It took nine engineers across five teams at the streamer to make it happen, apparently.

Samuel Roberts

Samuel is a PR Manager at game developer Frontier. Formerly TechRadar's Senior Entertainment Editor, he's an expert in Marvel, Star Wars, Netflix shows and general streaming stuff. Before his stint at TechRadar, he spent six years at PC Gamer. Samuel is also the co-host of the popular Back Page podcast, in which he details the trials and tribulations of being a games magazine editor – and attempts to justify his impulsive eBay games buying binges.