Netflix just updated its Android app to version 2.0.0, adding one major new feature: WiFi-only playback. You can grab the latest version directly from the official Google Play store (Android 2.2+ required).
Again, while there is only one new feature, it’s a massive one. Netflix is for streaming TV shows and movies, so it of course uses a huge amount of bandwidth. Being able to switch to using just Wi-Fi means you can avoid data caps from your mobile service provider. Whether you’re watching on an Android phone or an Android tablet, you can now do so without worrying about how much it may end up costing you.
Unless you have a real unlimited data plan on your device, you’ll want to get this update. Even then, Wi-Fi is sometimes faster and more reliable than 3G/4G, so you should probably get this new version regardless as it can’t hurt to have the option there.
Here’s the (very) brief announcement from Netflix, typos and all:
We know many of you love to watch Netflix on your Android smartphones and tablets. We just launched a new feature where you can select to playback on Wifi networks only. This means that while you can search, browse and enjoy all aspects of the Netflix app on a mobile data connection or Wifi, you can choose (via a “Settings” feature) to playback on WI-Fi networks only.
What this posting doesn’t mention is the other part of the changelog: “Playback stability improvements.” Netflix hasn’t given any more details beyond that, but that’s to be expected as this is really just a nicer way of saying “we fixed some bugs.” If you actually notice a significant difference, I’ll be surprised, but do let me know.
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