Netflix is finally bringing smart downloads to iOS devices, almost a year after the feature made its debut on Android. Smart downloads, which is touted as “a seamless way to help users manage their downloaded titles on the Netflix app” is now available on the iPhone and iPad, in addition to Android and Windows 10 devices. The feature essentially lets users automatically download the next episode in a series soon after they’re done watching a downloaded episode which means that it isn’t particularly useful for those who like to re-watch content, they’ve downloaded without having to stream it afresh.
Netflix has supported downloading movies and TV shoes for a while now, but on iOS, this has been a manual affair. The smart downloads feature automatically cues up the next episode in a series and automatically deletes the preceding episode once the user is done watching it. The feature is also apparently intelligent enough in cueing and deleting content. Say if someone has downloaded two episodes, the feature will start downloading the third episode only when the user has viewed the second.
Since the smart downloads work only on Wi-Fi, users need not worry about exhausting their mobile data when the feature is enabled. Storage is also not a problem, since the preceding episode is always deleted prior to the start of the next download. Netflix will also allow users to manually turn the feature of on iOS, much like how it is on Android and Windows 10.
“The faster our members can get to the next episode of their favorite stories, the better. Now, fans on the Netflix iOS app can get in on the fun and convenience of Smart Downloads, spending less time managing their downloads and more time watching. The feature is one more way we’re making it easier for Netflix fans to take the stories they love wherever they go,” Netflix said in a statement announcing smart downloads for iOS.
Smart downloads can be enabled or disables in two ways, either through the app settings menu or the downloads section.