Founded in 1997 by Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph in Scotts Valley, California, Netflix had its humble beginnings as a DVD by mail movie rental service that quickly surpassed the abilities of brick and mortar businesses of the time – namely Blockbuster and Hollywood Video. In 2007, the company expanded their reach and offerings to include an online streaming service to all subscribers. Then, in 2013, Netflix established their own film and television production company, and with the premiere of House of Cards changed the face of modern movie and TV distribution entirely.
Boasting a library of both original and curated cineamtic productions – including multiple Marvel Studios programs, stand up comedy specials, and feature-length movies – Netflix set the course for several likeminded companies to form in its wake. With the likes of Amazon Studios and FilmStruck making a concerted effort to compete with Netflix, the latest word has the latter California-based company primed to offer another innovation to its multimedia empire.
As reported by Engadget, Netflix has announced the ability to download certain movies and TV shows for use when an internet connection is unavailable. Courtesy of a new promotional video (see below) posted to the company’s official Twitter account, Netflix users can now download an app update for iOS and Android, with a whole catalog of feature films and TV shows available for offline playback. Granted, the resolution for downloaded content is not as high as current streaming options, but the fact that Netflix is making the option available – after previously claiming to have no intention to do so – is great news.
Netflix subscribers can now feel free to download and watch original series like Orange is the New Black, Narcos, and The Crown straight from their smartphone or tablet without the aid of a wi-fi connection – in addition to several NBC network sitcoms like Parks and Recreation, The Office, and 30 Rock. Movies like Boyhood, Dazed and Confused, and Minions are also available for offline playback, with more titles expected to become available as copyright issues and assorted contingencies are further addressed on the behalf of Netflix.
Being able to watch Netflix original series like Daredevil, Jessica Jones, and Luke Cage on the go is certainly an exciting new feature for longtime service subscribers, and should provide for further incentive for consumers to stick with the company for the long run. There is plenty to watch on Netflix via their online streaming platform, and the addition of offline playback only sweetens what is an already impressive deal.