Netflix lets Android users watch partially downloaded shows

It will start testing the feature for iOS in the coming months.

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Mariella Moon
June 28, 2021 9:00 AM

It can be quite infuriating to find out that you can't access some episodes and movies you thought you were able to download on your device after settling in for a long flight. Now Netflix has launched a new feature that can prevent the scenario from happening. Starting today, the streaming giant will let you begin watching shows and movies even if they never finished downloading while you were connected to the internet, as long as you're on an Android phone or tablet.

Netflix originally introduced the ability to download content way back in 2016 to give you a way to watch whatever you want even if you don't have constant access to an internet connection. It's an incredibly useful feature, especially if you commute regularly and live in places where mobile internet isn't reliable. 

The company has rolled out a number of other improvements to the downloads experience since then, including the ability to automatically delete stored episodes you've already seen and replace it with the next one in the series. Earlier this year, the service also introduced a new feature that automatically saves shows and movies its algorithm thinks you'll like.

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With partial downloads, Netflix will prompt you to download the rest of the title you've already started watching once you get back online. You'll also be able to find the show or movie in the "download" or the "continue watching" tabs. While the capability is only available for Android users right now, Netflix will start testing it for iOS in the coming months.

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