Netflix Launches Feature That Lets Viewer Speed Up Or Slow Down Content
Last year, Netflix began testing a feature — supposedly much requested by customers — that would allow Android users to vary the playback speed of their content. Viewers could slow down a movie or show to 0.5x or 0.75x, or speed it up to 1.25x or 1.5x. Although numerous filmmakers including Judd Apatow and Brad Bird said they were not in favor of the option, Netflix moved ahead with the test — and now is rolling the feature out for all Android users.
According to The Verge, Android app users can now access the feature, which is also available for downloaded titles saved for offline viewing. The final speeds offered are the same as the test: Down to half speed or up to 1.5 speed. Those mid-season episodes of Iron Fist will just fly by now!
Netflix gave a statement on the news to The Verge as well, saying that they’ve tailored the feature to some of the “concerns” voiced previously by creators:
We’ve also been mindful of the concerns of some creators. It’s why we have capped the range of playback speeds and require members to vary the speed each time they watch something new — versus fixing their settings based on the last speed they used.
I don’t have an Android device, so I can’t test it out myself. If the feature comes to Mac or iPads, I could see myself using the slo-mo version on some movies; I often rewind and rewatch favorite scenes, or sequences with particularly interesting camerawork or cuts, and slo-mo could possibly enhance that sort of granular dissection.
On the other end of the spectrum, speeding stuff up just strikes me as a slap in the face of the original creators. Why do you even need a feature to skim through something quickly? You’re not taking a test on it after it’s over. If something is moving too slowly and you don’t want to sit through the whole thing at normal speed, there was already an option for that: You turn it off.
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