Netflix announced yesterday that users will now have the ability to download TV series and movies to watch offline at no additional cost. Support for offline viewing is available through an update to the iOS and Android versions of the Netflix app. Simply click the download button on the details page for the program in order to watch later without internet. Subscribers can now binge while on airplanes, the subway, or road trips. Also, users will not have to use mobile data, which is especially important for areas with spotty Internet access.
Currently, only a fraction of Netflix’s online library is available for download. This includes hit Netflix originals “Orange Is the New Black,” “House of Cards,” “Narcos,” and “Stranger Things,” as well as some licensed content such as “Spotlight” and “Parks and Recreation.” Netflix promises more titles will soon be available.
Offline support will help Netflix to better compete against piracy sites that allow users to watch downloads offline. Additionally, Netflix will have to compete against other video-streaming services offering offline viewing. Amazon Prime has offered offline support since September 2015. Hulu has asserted that it is working to allow downloads.