Published: Tue, July 10, 2018
Life&Culture | By Sue Mclaughlin

Netflix Just Made On-the-Go Binge-Watching Easier Than Ever

Netflix Just Made On-the-Go Binge-Watching Easier Than Ever

Basically, when you finish watching a downloaded episode, Smart Downloads will delete it, and then automatically download the next episode. Before you Smart Download any of those, however, this otherwise knowledgeless writer recommends you dive into as many consecutive episodes as you possibly can of Bill Nye Saves the World. It doesn't use any more storage than the last episode you watched and saves you having to delete old episodes before you can download more.

Netflix's "smart downloads" feature will be added to its Android app through an update this week. Unfortunately, it's unclear if it's also making its way to iPhones and iPads, but we asked the company and will let you know once we find out. Netflix is "not yet sophisticated enough" to determine what movie you'll want to watch after finishing one you've downloaded, Cameron Johnson, Netflix's director of product innovation, said in a Q&A with reporters.

The feature is part of an update to Netflix's Android mobile app this week.

Users can disable the new feature if they want to keep the episodes they have watched on their device.

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It's limited to episodic TV series, not movies, standup specials or other kinds of programming. It's important to remember that the feature isn't adding a massive function; it's simply automating a process that is now manual, and will only suit a section of the user base.

Netflix resisted downloads for years, banking on the idea that streaming accessibility would eventually reach the point that downloading to watch offline wouldn't be necessary anymore.

The feature is ideal for those who love binge watching TV shows, don't want to burn through their data allowance, and certainly do not like the process of going through the download process manually.

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