For over a year now, we’ve gone without having a cable or satellite subscription at our house. I don’t miss it at all. In fact, spending over $60 a month for something that shows ads half of the time seems antiquated enough already. That, plus it makes absolutely no sense to pay that much a month when you’re only watching a few channels anyways. For me, there would be only a few channels I’d watch regularly anyways. AMC, Discovery Channel, TBS, ESPN, maybe a few others, and that’s about it.
The one thing that I do miss about having a subscription is the ease of just turning on one of my favorite channels and knowing that a lot of episodes of my favorite shows will be on for as long as I’d like. The way that Netflix lets you handpick episodes of shows and movies is great, but I’d still like to see it become that kind of experience where I know I can just easily leave it on throughout the day. Subscription services still allow for that, but I do think that Netflix could easily do it in two different ways.
1. Netflix Playlists – I’ve advocated for this for a while, and I’m still not so sure why Netflix hasn’t done it yet. In this option, you could make a playlist of your favorites, either by show or by individual episodes. Maybe even by movie if you’re planning a marathon. Make a list once, hit play, and Netflix will go through the entire list.
2. Netflix Shuffle – This would be somewhat like a playlist, but would mix up episodes of your favorite TV shows. It would be great if you could just tell Netflix that a specific list of a dozen or so shows are your favorite then just have a Netflix “channel” that plays random progressive lists of those shows. For example, lets say that I’ve added Star Trek: The Next Generation and King of the Hill. It would play the current episode of each of those in that order (or within a mix) and then play the next episodes once they’re both finished.
The only realistic barrier that I can see that’s holding Netflix back from doing either of the above are bandwidth concerns on their end. Though I’m not sure why Netflix would release a feature that automatically plays next episodes if it was a big one.
I’m submitting this post to all of the public feedback channels that Netflix typically interacts with customers on. If you’d like to see these features on their service, I’d appreciate your thoughts and your help in making this request of them too.