I don’t know about you, but I’m totally hooked on Netflix. The leading video streaming service’s expansive library of content is fantastic for binge-ing but sifting through the sheer breadth of titles can be daunting. Well, as much as Netflix is about compelling content, it’s also about bleeding-edge technology.
It’s about cutting-edge compression technology so that we, the users, get the best quality out of our smartphones on-the-go, or when we’re within bandwidth-constrained environments.
It’s also about intelligent algorithms that help us discover great content, so we spend less time browsing and more time watching.
In late 2016, Netflix introduced video previews to the TV user interface, with the same objective: finding great content.
Coming up next is mobile previews to the smartphone experience, kicking off with iOS then later on Android.
Mobile previews are designed to help you quickly find something great to watch when you’re on the go. Not quite teasers or trailers per se, but synopses that highlights the best of the title.
Previews are mobile-optimised by design, presented vertically so you can easily swipe to scroll and view them without having to adjust the orientation of your phone.
They’re intuitive and easy, and they’re personalised based on what you’ve watched and enjoyed in the past.
Netflix says it has been working on this for close to a year. The feature has been through rounds of testing to better understand what type of video is most compelling and useful for the smartphone.
The challenge of course, is that there’s less space on the smartphone than on a TV screen, and people tend to multitask more on the phone. Internal testing indicated that mobile previews did indeed drive viewing and helped people quickly find something great to watch.