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Netflix test interrupts your binge session with video promos

Unsurprisingly, subscribers are piiiiiiiiissed.
Lucy Nicholson / Reuters
Lucy Nicholson / Reuters
David Lumb
David Lumb|@OutOnALumb|August 17, 2018 4:31 PM

Netflix is trying out a new way to suggest content to viewers: Show them promos between episodes. The streaming company confirmed the tests to TechCrunch, but it doesn't appear to be a feature rolling out to everyone -- only a "small percentage" of subscribers will see the experimental psuedo-ads. And yet, the few viewers who have are irate, claiming the full-video interruptions are just as bad as commercials.

Contrary to complaints on a Reddit thread, the promos (which contain content from Netflix's whole library, not just its original shows) should be skippable -- just press the 'Continue' button. But for the many viewers who have seen and hated the intrusive videos -- unlike Hulu's lower subscription tier, people pay for Netflix to watch content ad-free -- there's no guarantee the streaming company will ever implement the feature for all.

Netflix runs plenty of these tests per year to try out new tweaks, perks or features for its service. Take the higher-priced Ultra tier it quietly introduced to users, or the 'binge scout' experiment handing kids collectible 'patches' for watching shows. Netflix gauges user reactions and may never move forward with these proposed features -- like when it concluded that gamifying content binging for young viewers wasn't the best idea.

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Netflix test interrupts your binge session with video promos