Netflix Testing 'Random Episode' Button for the Times When You Can't Decide What to Watch

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Apr 19, 2019.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Netflix has begun testing a new feature on mobile that allows select users to "Play a Popular Episode" of certain TV shows, without having to scroll through and pick which one they want to watch. As spotted by Android Police, the test only appears to be on the Android app as of now.

    Images via Android Police

    Additionally, users have noticed that in the playback controls of a TV show, there is a new "Random Episode" button. With this feature you would be able to shuffle around within the TV show you're already watching, which would be useful for people who watch their favorite shows repeatedly and don't necessarily need to see everything in order.

    As with all tests, it's unclear if Netflix will ever launch these features to a wide audience on both Android and iOS devices, or other platforms. If you're on Android, the random episode test is on v7.6.0 build 19 34157 of the Netflix Android app.

    Netflix will be gaining competition in the streaming market later this year when Apple TV+ and Disney+ launch, but the company has said that it isn't worried about these launches because of the "differing nature" of the content on offer. The company is also ramping up original content production, which means a price hike to $12.99/month for the popular HD streaming plan for all users beginning in May.

    Article Link: Netflix Testing 'Random Episode' Button for the Times When You Can't Decide What to Watch
  2. Azeroth1 macrumors regular

    Apr 20, 2010
    If you can’t decide what to watch on your own, go outside or read a book.
  3. Master Atrus macrumors regular

    Oct 17, 2003
    I could see the value of "I just want to watch something" and have Netflix pick a random episode of a popular TV show. At least then it is kind of like the old days of channel surfing ... But having me pick the show and then choosing a random episode seems weird. If I knew what show I wanted to watch, wouldn't I watch it in order?
  4. McG2k1 macrumors regular

    Jun 22, 2011
    If it was truly random show this would probably be fun. I’m not sure if I’ve ever had their algorithm actually pop something I wanted to see that I handn’t already though. A random episode within a series is stupid though. That only works for stuff like mythbusters and friends.
  5. Apple blogger macrumors 6502a

    Feb 28, 2013
    No airplay. No point. VPN used to help cause I could airplay from around the world. Now I can’t
  6. itsmilo macrumors 68020


    Sep 15, 2016
  7. Zxxv, Apr 19, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2019

    Zxxv macrumors 68040

    Nov 13, 2011
    About bloody time but their implementation is goofy. Why oh why are they so incompetent?

    If they manage to implement it properly though how many times will it recommend crap and you’ll just end up whacking on the button like tv channel hopping?

    They should also have a filter button as the last thing I want is some man on man action springing to life on my tv thanks.
  8. Elijen macrumors 6502


    May 8, 2012
    Seems good for sitcom shows like Friends where you don't care about the order.
  9. Scottsoapbox macrumors 6502a


    Oct 10, 2014
    Ha! I was going make the exact same comment. :cool:
  10. JetTester macrumors 6502

    Feb 12, 2014
    Yeah.... Tell me what to watch. Then tell me what to eat, wear, where to live, and finally who to vote for. No thanks, if I can't make a decision, I can just turn it off and do something worthwhile.
  11. jonnyb098 macrumors 68030


    Nov 16, 2010
    Relax pal, every music player has a shuffle button too. Its not some giant conspiracy. Also your point if counter can still make a decision.... NOT USE THE DAMN SHUFFLE BUTTON.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 19, 2019 ---
    No....there are tons of older shows that have zero need to be in order. The top ones that pop into my mind are nearly every Star Trek series, The Office, Friends......there are plenty of shows this would be useful for and I've wanted a shuffle feature for years. Sometimes I want to watch a show but spend 5-10 minutes figuring out which episode.
  12. uecker87 macrumors regular

    Oct 9, 2014
    Madison, WI
  13. b92b0b33ef5340e macrumors newbie


    Mar 23, 2019
    How about signing licensing deals so Netflix has something I would want to watch?

    Or you know the star rating system when their recommendation system actually worked?
  14. Arran macrumors 601


    Mar 7, 2008
    Atlanta, USA
    So many books. Which one? ;)
  15. Squonk macrumors 65816


    Mar 15, 2005
    "testing a randomize feature..." I can see the feedback from QA now, "it was not random enough"
  16. Jimmy James macrumors 601

    Jimmy James

    Oct 26, 2008
    If you can’t decide you need to learn to make decisions. One of those could be to do something else.
  17. lunarworks macrumors 68000

    Jun 17, 2003
    Toronto, Canada
    Imagine being so entirely against people telling you what to do that you get angry at a shuffle button.
  18. ProVideo macrumors 6502

    Jun 28, 2011
    It would need an option to keep it within certain seasons. Be able to exclude any episodes of The Office post-Steve Carell. Probably even keep it within seasons 1-5 before the wedding and baby and Jim and Pam became insufferable. If I pressed random and Robert California came on, I would just turn the TV off.
  19. C DM macrumors Sandy Bridge

    Oct 17, 2011
    If you can't choose, maybe it's time to watch something random on Netflix.
  20. Mac 128 macrumors 603

    Mac 128

    Apr 16, 2015
    “truly random” is the key phrase here. What do you want to bet the random selection is Netflix original content?
    --- Post Merged, Apr 19, 2019 ---
    Sadly, none of those shows are likely to be on Netflix after next year. Maybe Netflix will suggest if you can’t find something to watch, that you watch Amazon, Apple, ATT, Disney, CBSAA or Comcast?
  21. Zdigital2015 macrumors 65816

    Jul 14, 2015
    East Coast, United States
    “Why don’t I just tell you what Netflix Original you are going to watch today” - S07, E08...Obviously paraphrasing...
  22. timborama macrumors 6502


    Oct 12, 2011
    Sounds like something Apple would do and/or patent, then call it “innovation”. But seriously, if you’re facing this type of dilemma, you have bigger issues.
  23. dannyyankou macrumors 604


    Mar 2, 2012
    Scarsdale, NY
    This would be perfect for Seinfeld, but that’s on Hulu only.
  24. M.PaulCezanne macrumors 6502a


    Mar 5, 2014
  25. C DM macrumors Sandy Bridge

    Oct 17, 2011
    Trying different features in a product?

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