Subscription streaming services have reinvented the way we watch TV. If streaming is the new frontier, Netflix is pushing the envelope to interactive TV.
According to a report by Bloomberg on Tuesday, Netflix has plans to develop several new shows that will allow viewers to control the plot of TV shows and movies as they progress.
“Black Mirror,” now an original Netflix sci-fi series will be first up to debut the services’ new addition. So far, info about the secret Season 5 premiere has been kept under wraps— until now. It’s been confirmed that the show will return in December, likely around Christmas similarly to Season 4.
Netflix initially announced interactive TV last June, but it was only offered on kids’ shows. “Puss in Book: Trapped in an Epic Tale,” “Buddy Thunderstruck: The Maybe Pile,” and “Stretch Armstrong: The Breakout,” were among the original lineup.
Netflix first pioneered the concept of “binge-watching,” by posting full seasons of addicting shows like House of Cards.
If a Netflix show is interactive, you will see a small icon of a game controller over the show or film’s thumbnail.
Back in December 2017, Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos told Bloomberg the company was gearing up for a new experimental interactive show for adults after comparing data from the children’s experiences. Bloomberg also confirmed Netflix is in the process of negotiating the rights to alter at least two other projects which are adaptations of video games.
While subscribers seem excited about the new venture, critics question whether interactive episodes will be financially feasible. In addition to the increase in cost, more time, writing, and acting will be necessary to pull off more than an occasional episode.
“While a traditional movie has a 100-page script, a two-hour experience needs to have a longer script and production to account for all the different scenarios,” Bloomberg reported. “Writers and producers are still determining how the extra demands affect their pay, among other matters.”
Netflix isn’t the only streaming service trying to make their mark in interactive TV. In HBO’s, Mosaic, Steven Soderbergh used interactivity through an app for iOS and Apple TV.
Would you be into using interactive TV? A Stranger Things pick-your-own-adventure? Or maybe Ozark? Where could you see interactive TV?