One of the great things about Netflix is its vast and varied library of content, but sometimes that’s also one of its downsides. It’s estimated that the average viewer wastes around 20 minutes making a selection, time which could better be spent actually watching something you enjoy, especially if your schedule means you can only sit down to unwind late at night before going to bed. To counter this issue and keep people watching and entertained, a new feature is now being tested: Shuffle Play.
The option is designed to make a selection for you, using your viewing history to ascertain your viewing habits and interests. It randomly chooses something its algorithm deems similar in appeal, be it something of the same genre as what’s in your history, or appears in playlists containing things you’ve already watched, all with the intent to streamline the viewing experience and make finding something to watch more straightforward.
The feature hasn’t been completely rolled out yet, but to refine its operation it’s been added to the service of select groups of customers over the last month. If you’re one of the chosen few, the button will be available in one or more of three places: underneath the profiles in the startup screen, in the billboard area of your home screen, or the TV menu sidebar. It’s also currently only available on Connected TV devices like Amazon Fire, Roku, PlayStation or Xbox, but if it proves successful, it will presumably be added to the features of all subscribers.
Netflix is still in the testing phase of Shuffle Play, and as feedback continues to roll in, it’ll be revised and updated to better target relevant content and take the burden of selection away from people too indecisive or tired to pick something for themselves. In the end, it should leave us all with more time to watch the films and TV shows we love, and perhaps be introduced to something new in the process.