Netflix Testing Audio-Only Mode for Mobile

Some people make TV watching an event, complete with refreshments, dimmed lights, and a snuggly pet. Others treat it like background noise, something to fill their ears while they work or do other things. Netflix is testing the perfect feature for those background-noise watchers: an audio-only mode.

Netflix is currently testing an audio-only mode on Android phones, Android Police reports. The feature is not yet available even to all Android subscribers, so you’ll have to check if you have it. If you do, the screen will show a “Video Off” button when you tap the screen in full-screen mode. Tapping the button turns on the audio-only mode, which just has a blank screen beneath the Netflix menu items.

This feature is, again, in testing. It may never roll out completely. If it does, though, it could pair well with the huge library of shows that offer Audio Description, in which a narrator describes what’s happening in between character dialogue. Together, these two features would turn a show like The Queens Gambit into a high-production-value audiobook. The mode will definitely save battery life since it’s not showing images, and we’re betting it’ll save on data, though we’re not able to verify that at this time.

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