Netflix Introduces Offline Viewing To Its Service For Smartphones And Tablets

Netflix fans who have been subdued and held back all this while by the impossible task of streaming with the poor internet services often attainable in most African countries, there is good news for you.

You can now download Netflix shows and movies for offline viewing. Now it’s easier to binge watch your favorite shows without worrying about the incessant buffering that often follows an attempt at streaming.

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Even watching while taking a bus to another town is possible because you can have the movie downloaded offline and ready to watch. To get the offline downloads, you just have to update your iOS or Android app.

When you have the app updated on whatever device you are using, you can select “Available for Download” from the Netflix menu from your mobile device to see the entire collection of downloadable content.

offline downloads

The selections are arranged according to the categories that you are already used to, which are based off other content that you have watched in the past.

Tony Gunnarsson, a TV and video analyst with market research firm Ovum, points out that Netflix’s decision to allow offline downloads are not just a matter of convenience. For Netflix, it is about being a truly global company.

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While markets like US and Europe will just see this as a good addition to an already excellent service, for emerging markets like Asia and Africa, some consumers just don’t have the kind of internet access that lets you get an uninterrupted stream and mobile data itself can be quite costly.

Having offline downloads will enable these customers to load up on shows whenever they have access to Wi-Fi, making sure that their subscriptions are not a complete waste.


Marlee Tart, a Netflix spokeswoman, wrote in an email to WIRED that;

“Netflix is working with lots of partners globally to get downloading rights for the bulk of the content on our service…This is an ongoing effort as we know consumers want this capability and we are working to provide it.”

So if you had given up on Netflix because of streaming issues, right now may be a good time to dust off your subscription, upgrade the app, free up space on your devices and start downloading.