The majority of movie theaters are still dark, and folks are still social distancing all thanks to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. So watch parties have become popular, which means developers are building apps to make the situation a little easier.
The only potential problem is the fact that most of these watch party services are only available on computers, and that’s not always the best way to watch a movie or binge a TV show — even while you’re watching that content with your remote friends and/ or family members. That’s where “Watch With Friends” comes in. It’s developed by Caavo, and it’s available now for iOS. It makes it possible to watch Netflix content with friends, with the movie or TV show synced up so you can all enjoy it together.
The Watch With Friends app is available on iOS, Android, and even offers a Chrome extension. You use the app to create a direct link to the content you want to watch on Netflix. The people you want to join in the watch party can use the app to do so, which the app “automatically identifies your Roku or Apple TV to play the show for you” (per The Verge).
What’s more, the Watch With Friends app actually includes a built-in chat functionality, so you don’t have to switch to another app to talk to another while you’re watching the content together. It’s not exactly a Group FaceTime call, but if you and your friends prefer to text rather than video chat, the app will handle that.
The important details
There are a few things to be aware of, iOS and Apple TV device owners. First, you’ll need to make sure that you have the Watch With Friends app installed on your iPhone (obviously), but you will also need to have the Caavo companion app installed on your Apple TV. Both are free to download and install. The Caavo app will keep everything in sync while you’re watching remotely with your friends and family.
Meanwhile, the general details: Everyone in the watch party needs to have their own Netflix account, and Caavo says this only works with Netflix for right now — but additional services will be supported at some point in the future.
Watch parties in the living room, where they belong
While some folks might not mind using a computer for a watch party, the fact that Watch With Friends broadens availability to Roku and Apple TV devices is a nice change of pace. The best part is that it’s not a complicated process, even if it does require installing a couple of different apps.
Do you think you’ll try this out?