Netflix App for Android May Soon Add Background Audio Playback Option, Code Hints


  • Netflix audio-only feature is said to save mobile data
  • The feature may help users complete important tasks
  • Netflix Android app feature may come handy in saving battery life

Netflix is reportedly preparing to add an audio-only feature to its Android app that is said to let users (just) listen to Netflix shows, or, listen to their shows while they do other things with their devices. A publication has been able to unearth evidence in the Netflix app for Android that mentions a background audio playback feature. Apart from the benefits of multitasking, the feature – that essentially turns off video – will also be able to help users save data and their device’s battery life.

XDA Developers has been able to find a mention of it in the code of the Netflix app for Android version 7.79.1, suggesting that Netflix is preparing to add background audio playback feature to let users listen to their audio content of movies and shows in the background. The publication shares that code from the Netflix v7.79.1 app for Android contained these strings “Save your data by turning off the video and listening to your favorite shows […] The video is off, but you can continue listening to your show while you are busy doing other things.”

As mentioned, apart from the obvious benefits you get from being able to multitask while continuing to listen to your Netflix content in the background, the company appears to be also pitching it as a way to save data and battery life. This would make sense, as the screen and chipset no longer need to display video content. Of course, Netflix already offers a picture-in-picture mode, or more specifically, a floating window on both Android and iOS, allowing users to continue watching and listening to content while they do other things. The differences between the two modes, or background audio playback and picture-in-picture, should be apparent.

Several other streaming services offer floating picture-in-picture modes, as does YouTube with its Premium subscription – in fact, it also offers background audio playback. Notably, Netflix was last year also spotted testing a pop-up video player on desktop.


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