Netflix app is about to cross 1 billion downloads mark on Android. To stay in the competition of the best OTT service providers, it keeps on bringing features to enhance user experience. One such novel feature that Netflix is about to launch is giving the viewers the option to choose the content playback speed.
It is offering four different levels – 0.5x, 0.75x, 1.25x, and 1.5x. In other words, the pending demand for watching a scene in slow motion or fast motion has been met. YouTube allows streaming a step lower all the way down to 0.25x speed. Content playback speed feature will also be valid on downloaded titles set aside for offline viewing.
For those who have altered the speed settings, it has to be kept in mind that selected playback speed for a title does not remain permanently in settings. In other words, when watching another title, it will be at the standard playback speed. The new feature is knocking tomorrow on the Netflix app. As of now it is being rolled out for Android users in a phased manner and will be available globally in the coming weeks.
The introduction of the slow-motion feature by Netflix was planned earlier in 2019. But it got plagued by opposition from Hollywood’s creative community. Actor Aaron Paul and the director Brad Bird voiced against the feature rollout. They were joined by director Judd Apatow who raised concern via tweet: “distributors cannot alter the way content is presented “.
The controversy is around giving the viewer’s ability to alter the enjoyment of a work. The 2020 rollout will be different. Netflix is working with the creative teams to ensure the quality of the content is intact. It is striving towards maintaining “the pitch in the audio at faster and slower speeds” along with variation in the slow or fast-paced video.
“We’ve also been mindful of the concerns of some creators. It’s why we have capped the range of playback speeds and require members to vary the speed each time they watch something new — versus fixing their settings based on the last speed they used” confirmed by Netflix spokesperson to The Verge.
Netflix’s plan to introduce the Playback Speed control feature has been designed for people with disabilities. Blind and Deaf deformities afflicted people were earlier finding it difficult to follow subtitles or hearing while normal screening for some titles. With this feature, they will be able to follow the pace of subtitle playback. It will now contextually match the speed of video playback.
Netflix is reportedly planning to start testing the feature on iOS devices and the web version of the app in the near future. But there is no update on its plans for TV app. In the meantime, it will keep an eye on the feedback it receives on the playback speed from the creative community and subscribers.