Netflix video previews speed content selection

Netflix is launching a new television user interface that uses video more extensively to bring content alive in real time and helps members decide whether to click ‘Play’.

In a blog post, Stephen Garcia, Director of Product Innovation for TV and Chris Jaffe, VP of Product Innovation, say: “From the early days of web design to our more personalized, video-rich interfaces, we’ve come a long way together. Six years ago when we imagined what Netflix should look like on a TV screen, it’s not surprising we knew video would play a big role. How could it not? Back then, the technology didn’t exist to allow us to easily show video to members as they browsed through thousands of titles, and consumers were still getting used to the idea of using the Internet to watch TV.”

“Fast forward to today: we are launching a new television user interface that uses video more extensively to bring content alive in real time and helps members decide whether to click play. As we launch more than 1,000 hours of original content next year, we know we have less than 90 seconds to capture someone’s attention and get them excited about a title — that’s why we’re introducing video previews into the TV browsing experience,” they explain.

“What’s a video preview? For starters, video previews aren’t teasers or traditional trailers. They are specially designed video synopses that help members make faster and more confident decisions by quickly highlighting the story, characters and tone of a title. In developing this experience, our testing showed that people watched more of a story, demonstrating these previews helped them browse less and watch more,” they advise.

The previews launch globally as from December 6th and will become available on eligible devices over the next few weeks. They will be available on Netflix enabled devices, which includes the majority of game consoles and Roku devices, with smart TVs and others getting updated in the coming months.

“This is our latest effort to continually evolve the Internet TV experience to one that provides greater choice, richer imagery, better context, and a more consumer-friendly experience. When we launched streaming back in 2007, we were mostly trying to figure out what this new medium could be and how best to present it. Over the last decade, investments in how content is delivered globally, optimising our streams for bandwidth-constrained environments, and the evolution of consumer tastes allows us to experiment with new ways to improve your experience,” they suggest.

“As video becomes a bigger part of our lives, it will continue to play an increasing role within Netflix as we enhance the Internet TV experience around the world. We hope you enjoy video previews and find more great stories along the way,” they conclude.

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