Like most of you, I’ve been spending a lot of time online lately. Unlike most of you, I normally spend a great deal of time online, so I have been perhaps a little less off-kilter than some of you have in moving most of my social life online. However, despite my comfort level even I enjoy a little group socializing now and then.
Those very few of you who regularly read my column will have read last month about using an online tool to hang out with others. (Yes, a dreadful pun I know,)
This month I’d like to tell you about another online socializing tool, Netflix Party.
Netflix Party is a Google Chrome add-on that synchronizes the watching of a movie or episode on Netflix between remote locations. In other words, if you’d like to watch a movie with someone else that isn’t in your household you can use this tool to synchronize both of your computers so you can watch together.
To accomplish this you’ll need to first install the Google Chrome web browser if you haven’t already. Then you’ll need to go to netflixparty.com and look for the Install Netflix Party button in the upper right corner. This will take you to the Google Chrome webstore. Now click on the Add to Chrome button. You will be asked if you’d like to add the extension to Chrome. Say yes.
Keep in mind you’ll need the other party or parties that you intend to watch with to also perform these steps.
Now that you’ve all installed Netflix Party, open up Netflix and pick your show. Start it playing. Now click the red NP button on the URL bar at the top of Chrome. Now click the Start the Party button.
A box will pop up with a URL in it. Below you’ll see a Copy URL link. Click on it to copy the URL.
Now email or text the link to your friends. Once they have the link, they should click on the URL and then click on the red NP link on the URL bar at the top of Chrome.
Both you and they should now see a chatroom window on the right side of the movie window. This is so you can make quips while the show is running. Just don’t be the guy that chats the entire movie. This is useful to request a bathroom or drink refresh pause. Or the very occasional “does the director think we’re all idiots?!” comment.
And there you go. Now you can watch the latest episode of Ozark with your pals that you haven’t seen, except at the end of your driveway, for a month.
Finally, this is much easier to set up and get working on a laptop or desktop computer than on an internet-connected big screen TV, unless you have browsing capabilities on the TV or if the TV is having the show streamed to it. It works fine on tablets and phones that support Google Chrome.