With the popularity of local and cable TV waning and the Internet broadband width increasing at very affordable prices, getting our entertainment online has become more and more the norm these days. You can get the latest news updates on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. You can watch videos of our favorite songs and clips of our most beloved TV shows to our hearts’ content on apps like YouTube and Vimeo. Then of course, there are the on-demand streaming media providers, which have posed a huge threat not just to cable providers, but also to the cinema industry.
The most wide-reaching of these streaming providers is Netflix, which caters to over 40 countries in four continents. Though it was founded way back in 1997, it’s still a bit of a novelty to many of its users, a novelty in the sense that many have yet to get past its basic functions. For those in the know, Netflix actually has a myriad of hacks that help make your viewing more convenient and faster.
12 Delete your viewing history
Every Netflix account is entitled to a maximum of five unique profiles of either individuals or themes. But if you haven’t got much time on your hands to create different profiles for different members of the family, chances are, all people under your household are using just one profile. If that’s the case, it’s best to clear your viewing history, especially if you’ve got kids around, since you wouldn’t want them accidentally clicking on the adult movie your husband was watching the night before. According to an October 2014 article on Techtimes, it takes three simple steps to delete your history:
11 You can access the Netflix selection from other regions
You don’t have to be limited to watching your region’s Netflix selection. It’s a fact that US Netflix has the widest and best selection of shows and movies, given that Netflix is headquartered there. But folks from Canada or Europe or Latin America can access US Netflix through some simple steps, as mentioned in a September 2014 article in Vulture:
10 Watch Netflix in any country (for laptops)
Many who travel overseas bring laptops for a multitude of functions. And you Netflix subscribers will be glad to know that yet another benefit of taking your laptops is the ability to access your Netflix account from any country you travel to! Here’s how to adjust your settings, according to Vulture:
9 View your shows and movies on HD
You don’t have to rent a movie through your cable provider’s on-demand library to be able to watch a home movie on HD. Netflix provides its users with this function as well. The downside though, according to a September 2014 article on Huffington Post, is watching on HD uses up a lot of data. So you have to ensure you’ve got the bandwidth to accommodate it. Here’s how to get that movie-theatre feel by watching on HD:
8 No more buffering (for regular PCs and Macs)
The biggest headache about streaming media is when what you’re watching starts buffering for one reason or another. Well, there’s something that can be done about it, short of calling your cable company and yelling at them for a slow Internet connection. Said the article in Huffington Post, Netflix has a secret menu that you can access:
7 There’s a cheat code to log in on a gaming console
For those who access Netflix through gaming consoles, you can put your controllers to use for cheat codes that aren’t just for your games. Netflix is accessible via cheat code, too, according to Huffington Post.
6 Use your smartphone as a remote control (for PS3)
Another one of the many joys of smartphones is their ability to be used as a remote control for Netflix if for some reason, your PS3 controllers aren’t available at that moment. According to Techtimes, Android and Apple operating systems are more than capable of doing this:
5 Apple TV is awesome for Netflix
But only if you’re using it right. As Techtimes reported, a good amount of Apple TV owners aren’t maximizing the TV’s multitude of functions for their Netflix subscriptions. Here’s how to do it correctly:
4 Use hotkeys instead of your mouse (for laptops and PCs)
The mouse was invented for lazy bones who didn’t want to bother with the many functions a simple keyboard had to offer. But if you want to speed things along, using hot keys is much more convenient, according to Techtimes, considering of course, you’ve familiarized yourself with the hot keys that can serve your purpose:
3 Use websites and add-ons
Techtimes and Huffington Post have recommended websites and add-ons that can make your Netflix viewing experience more enjoyable and your selections more diverse. InstantWatcher.com is a very user-friendly way to navigate through Netflix. It gives you the chance to review titles and check out ratings and recommendations for the videos you’re thinking of watching. Google Chrome, on the other hand, has an extension called Netflix Enhancer, wherein you can see trailers to help you decide on which show or movie you’d like to indulge in.
2 Rate everything for better recommendations
If you’re reaping the benefits of being able to dissect what’s worth watching and what isn’t based on Netflix users’ reviews, why not get into the mix and post some ratings yourself? According to Vulture, your ratings will be the basis of what future shows and movies Netflix will recommend to you. And by rating the titles you’ve watched, your actions also help other Netflix subscribers in deciding what’s to their taste and what isn’t.
1 Make subtitles more legible
Netflix provides subtitles and yes, they’re the correct ones! Sometimes, though, the font may be too small or the text color may be too light for you to read the words correctly and you end up missing the action. The Vulture article mentioned an alternative to Netflix’s basic yellow-sans-serif-font-and-black-background subtitles:
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