Notably, even the downloaded control that is saved for offline viewing can also be watched at the preferred playback speed.
As you can already do on YouTube, it'll soon be possible to adjust playback rates of video on Netflix, slowing down to 0.75x or 0.5x or upping to 1.25x and 1.5x speed. Netflix is rolling out these variable speed playback controls this weekend in various markets as the feature goes global in the coming weeks.
To view content in an alternate speed, Netflix subscribers will have to select this option for each title that they watch. The next title to be played will start at 1.0x unless a different speed is selected.
Netflix explained that it built this feature with creator concerns in mind by limiting the number of speeds and also resetting the selection on each viewing session. "That's why we've limited the playback speed range and require members to vary their speed every time they see something new, rather than correcting their settings based on the last speed they used".
After months of testing, Netflix is joining myriad streaming services in adopting variable speed playback.
When it was announced back in October, Judd Apatow wrote on Twitter, "No, Netflix, no". That's not how it works. "Doing so is a breaking of belief and gained't be tolerated by the individuals who present it".
In response, Netflix said that it was incorporating several measures to remain "sensitive to creator concerns".
This feature was first announced a year ago, and it took this long to launch because Netflix was working on features that ensure a smooth experience - such as automatically correcting the pitch in audio at faster and slower speeds so what you're hearing isn't going to be a distorted mess.
The feature has been under testing since a year ago. "Most important of all, our tests show that consumers value the flexibility it provides whether it's rewatching their favorite scene or slowing things down because they're watching with subtitles or have hearing difficulties". In a now deleted Tweet (all of his Tweets are deleted as he is taking a Twitter break) he reckoned there was no way Netflix would actually implement the feature, despite a trial.