The streaming platform today launched Smart Downloads on Android, a new feature that will always have an episode from your favourite shows ready to watch while you are on the move. But as competitors like Amazon Prime Video began offering downloads, and as Netflix itself expanded internationally to markets where mobile connectivity wasn't as reliable as in the US, Netflix relented.
With "smart downloads", the Netflix mobile app automatically deletes episodes you've completed and replaces them with the next show in the series once your phone connects to Wi-Fi again. The company has announced that an auto-download feature is available for the Android app from today, and will be added to the iOS app later in the year ... Said Cameron Johnson, Director of Product Innovation at Netflix. Control of the new feature still lies with the user, as-should you choose to do so-you can turn it off and enjoy downloads the old-fashioned and inherently more annoying way too.
Smart Downloads will need to be switched on through the Netflix app settings, and can also be switched off in case you prefer to download and manage your TV shows the old fashioned way.
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The basic Netflix plan starts at $7.99 which allows you to stream content in standard definition on one display.
Netflix says the feature is mostly aimed at public transit commuters who may have limited or poor network coverage during their journey. 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 also recently released its first show produced in India, Sacred Games. This way, it won't be using up your phone's storage and you will be able to continue watching your show when you don't have internet.