Netflix says offline viewing is ‘never going to happen’

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Potentially crushing hopes and dreams, a Netflix executive confirmed on Wednesday the company has no plans to bring offline viewing, aka the ability to watch shows and movies without a network or Wi-Fi connection, to its customers.

Cliff Edwards, Netflix’s director of corporate communications and technology, told British publication TechRadar offline viewing is “never going to happen”. Netflix had previously given us a morsel of hope a few years prior when offline viewing briefly showed up in a Android Honeycomb tablet demo in 2011.

According to Edwards, Netflix has chosen not to pursue offline viewing/downloads because it’s a “short term fix for a bigger problem”. His stance is that customers will soon never be in a place where they can’t connect to Wi-Fi, making offline downloads unnecessary. I think he’s forgetting about airplanes, though.

Essentially, it seems Netflix may be saving itself from having to go after deals with studios over offline viewing – which is a whole different beast than establishing streaming deals.

As of late, Netflix has been working to grow its original programming, with plans for twenty new shows in the coming future.