Netflix came earlier than Amazon Prime to India. Surprisingly, Netflix themed concepts became popular quickly too. So, not just Netflix, but the term Netflix and Chill became popular in India before Amazon Prime even reached our shores. Netflix and Chill is basically the first-time binge watching was tied up with social interaction. Basically, it meant two people binging on something together and doing whatever comes with it.
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While that as a trend, YouTube and Facebook seem to be thinking that the next big thing in watching streaming is social streaming – where people from around the world basically watch something streaming together. And for that, both YouTube and Facebook have implemented changes on their platforms, so users can not just watch, but also chat with each other and interact amongst the audience.
Facebook, on its Groups, allows a Facebook user to host a watch party. With a watch party, a content creator can literally launch a film or a web series and have a captive audience watch it immediately. YouTube has been doing this since a while now. Users can watch a video live and leave live comments. The functionality is a bit different – YouTube uses Google+ functionality to allow users to watch a video live.
The concept is the same – Netflix and Amazon Prime yet don’t have a functionality that allows people to watch a web series or an original film together. In fact, both can be accused of making the viewing experience very insular – Netflix has even done away with the rating system – so people can now only give a thumbs up or a thumbs down to content on Netflix’s streaming platform – leaving armchair reviewers in the lurch.
Audiences are still warming up to social viewing – but it does have the potential to be the next big thing for online viewing. YouTube and Facebook are just the predecessors of the game.