If you were hoping that Netflix would offer offline playback, we have some bad news. Netflix will not be allowing users to cache television shows and movies for later playback. In an interview, Director of Corporate Communications and Technology Cliff Edwards denied that Netflix would offer offline storage of content, categorically stating “It’s never going to happen.”
Edwards said that storing videos for offline viewing was a “short term fix for a bigger problem” in terms of connectivity. The company believes that Internet connections will become more prevalent and improve in quality, including in places like planes. Edwards thinks that these connectivity issues will not be an issue in the long term. He may be right, though I’m sure many users still would like it.
There are benefits to offline caching though. Obviously you can play videos when an Internet connection is not present, which few streaming services take advantage of. Plus it can also help people trying to watch high-quality streams. Ultra HD video feeds usually require a strong connection for smooth playback. Amazon recently recommended a “steady Internet connection of 25Mb/s or faster” to stream their high-resolution content, with caching potentially allowing owners of slower connections to download the entire show before viewing it uninterrupted by buffering. What do you think? Should Netflix offer it?