UPDATED 10/29, 5:00 p.m. ET: Netflix issued a statement regarding its testing of various playback speeds. "We regularly test new features that could help improve Netflix," the company said. "In the last month, we’ve started testing several additional player controls, including the ability to: alter the brightness on your phone without going into settings; lock your screen and find your language and audio settings more easily; and vary the speed at which you watch on mobile."
Netflix added that it's heard the feedback, and that it has "no plans to roll any of these tests out in the short term." Whether it does, will depend on the feedback it receives.
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In a sign of how endlessly people consume content on Netflix, the streaming giant has reportedly started to roll out variable playback speeds for certain users. As Android Police pointed out, the company has been testing out the feature on its Android app over the past couple weeks. It's part of a limited trial rollout, and it's unclear if the feature is expected to be implemented fully.
Some users began to notice the option in their Netflix app, with playback options of 0.5x, 0.75x, 1x, 1.25x, and 1.5x. Adjustable playback speeds have already proved popular with podcast listeners and YouTube users, but there's bound to be some resistance from creatives working on movies or shows for Netflix.
Understandably, some have already expressed how they are less than pleased with the idea. "No @Netflix no. Don't make me have to call every director and show creator on Earth to fight you on this," director and writer Judd Apatow, who executive produced Netflix's Love, wrote on Twitter. "I will win but it will take a ton of time. Don't fuck with our timing. We give you nice things. Leave them as they were intended to be seen."
Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse co-director Peter Ramsey echoed Apatow's comments with a simple, "Fuck that shit."
Aaron Paul, who starred in the Netflix film El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie, expressed his doubt that the streaming service would actually move past the testing phase of variable playback speeds, which would "completely taking control of everyone else’s art and destroying it."
Some Netflix users are appreciative of the idea. Safe to say anyone content watching movies at 1.5x speed won't be checking out Martin Scorsese's Netflix debut The Irishman, which clocks in at three and a half hours long.
The people looking forward to watching Stranger Things at a higher speed are presumably sociopaths.