Netflix is reportedly working on adding a sleep timer to its Android app. While not much is known about this feature at the moment, it could allow users to set a duration for playback, after which Netflix would automatically stop playback. It would be helpful if you are someone like me who falls asleep while late-night binge sessions. The feature is likely to build on Netflix’s ‘Are you still watching?’ feature that pauses playback after a period of inactivity. However, it happens until the user prompts the app to continue.
The update comes from XDA Developers who report that a string of code was found in v7.82.1 APK of the Netflix app for Android. It suggests that the feature could be on its way but the report comes with a disclaimer that says “an APK teardown can often predict features that may arrive in a future update of an application, but it is possible that any of the features we mention here may not make it in a future release.” It goes on to say that the feature is currently unimplemented in the live build and may be pulled at any time by the developers in a future build.
As for the code, it doesn’t reveal much beyond the words ‘sleep timer button. This feature could be relevant if you have autoplay switched on, which continuously plays content such as TV show episodes one after the other. The sleep timer could automatically shut off playback after a predetermined time, rather than relying on the ‘Are you still watching?’ pop-up that comes on screen randomly. Moreover, it could be useful for monitoring children’s watch time.
The report goes on to say that the ‘sleep timer’ feature is still a long way from rolling out widely. While it could be shelved entirely, it does give us a hint about upcoming additions.