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How to use Netflix Party: watch shows and movies with your friends while under lockdown

The ongoing coronavirus lockdown has resulted in a surge of popularity for several that help people stay in touch while maintaining social distancing. Some of these apps have been around for a while, and are coming in handy now, like the Houseparty video calling app that lets users have fun with interactive games while on a group video chat. While Houseparty has been going viral, you might also want to check out Netflix Party. A Chrome extension rather than an app, it lets you watch movies and shows on Netflix with your friends and chat with them at the same time.

The Netflix Party Chrome extension can be installed via its official website. Just like the Houseparty app, it needs one user to start a Netflix party, who can then invite people over to watch a movie or show with them. Everyone who has been invited to the party can pause, play, fast forward and rewind the video, so the whole group is always on the same time frame. There’s also a side chat bar, where everyone in the group can discuss what’s going on in the movie or show. Basically, Netflix Party tries to bring a movie night experience with friends or family in a virtual setting. However, there’s no word on how many people maximum can join a Netflix Party at one time.

How to use Netflix Party

The first step is to make sure that everyone you want to invite to your Netflix Party has a Netflix account and the Netflix Party Chrome extension installed. Once you have done so, open Netflix on Chrome and start watching a pre-decided movie or show. As soon as you start playing the video, the NP icon beside the address bar will turn from grey to red and you can now click on it to start the party. The person starting the party becomes the host and can choose whether only they can control the playback or anyone in the group can. Once the party has started, a pop-up box will show up on the screen with an URL, which can be shared with the people you want to invite. The chatroom will be visible on the right side of the screen, where the host can see when someone joins or leaves the party.

From playing games to watching movies together with your gang, technology has really made social distancing easy in this time of distress. How are you dealing with the lockdown? Tell us in the comments box below.

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Abhiman Biswas

Abhiman is obsessed with all things tech. His hobbies include reading on his Kindle and clicking random pictures on his phone. His secret superpowers happen to be mixing great cocktails and lip reading. In his spare time, you are likely to find him cleaning his aquascape, researching new species of aquatic fishes and planning which aquatic plants to buy next.