How practical would it be if you could just make a boring movie run faster? The streaming service Netflix probably had this idea: Users should be able to adjust the playback speed in the future, the company confirmed in a blog post.
Now, selected customers should be able to view content at 1.25 and 1.5 times the speed – or, if it is going too fast, reduce the speed by 0.25 and 0.5 times. Initially, Android users should be able to use the function, later it should also be available for iOS users.
This feature is not new – the changeable playback speed has long been available on platforms such as YouTube and podcast services. Netflix tested the function for the first time in 2019 and already triggered a wave of criticism back then. The filmmakers’ argument: Netflix must show the films and series as intended by their creators.
Netflix took up the criticism in its blog post and explained: “Similar functions have been available on DVD players and video recorders for years and the feature was requested by many members.” Since a large number of Netflix users view content in a foreign language, would many would like to be able to take a closer look at individual scenes with the new function in order to understand them better.
The test also ensures that users cannot set the speed as the default. The streaming service also pointed to positive reactions from the deaf and dumb and blind community.