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Netflix Is Finally Testing A Feature Fans Have Wanted For Ages

Netflix has been at the forefront of streaming innovation since streaming became a thing. That's mostly because they pretty much invented the streaming game as we know it, of course. Even as the rules of that game continue to change and the competition gets a little fiercer, Netflix is still bent on innovating, and their latest upgrade is currently getting tested on platforms across the planet.

That innovation is one Netflix bosses have been trying to crack for a while now, and it finds the streamer now giving their subscribers the option to "Shuffle Play" when they sign on. Yes, that "Shuffle Play" option will work more or less in the same fashion as similar options on music streaming sites. That means when you select the option, a Netflix algorithm will scroll through your queue, examine your past viewing habits, and select a show or movie at random for you to watch based on the info it collects. Said show or movie could be something you're already watching, or just something the algorithm think suits your taste.

The "Shuffle Play" addition is essentially a move aimed to help those subscribers who tend to spend a lot of time indecisively scrolling through their queue instead of just picking something to watch and actually watching it. And if we're being completely honest, that's probably every single Netflix subscriber on the planet. So even as uncertainty swirls around the new feature, we're betting it'll get lots of use from folks who just can't pull the trigger when searching Netflix's vast library

If you're one of those folks, and are among the Netflix subscribers in the "Shuffle Play" test market, you should now have a big "Shuffle Play" button showing on your home page, so feel free to click away and let Netflix help you make that oh-so fateful streaming pick.

The internet is already divided about Netflix's "Shuffle Play" feature

So far, Netflix has only been testing their "Shuffle Play" option on television-based devices, so if you're primarily streaming via desktop or laptop, it might be a while before you get to shuffle yourself. As for those who already have the option available, they're about as divided on its usefulness as you'd expect, and they're taking to Twitter to voice their opinions.

For user @mnathann, the "Shuffle Play" option appears to be a most welcome addition, with the Netflixer tweeting, "Whoa whoa what is this cool 'shuffle play' feature on Netflix?!? It's amazing and helpful for my indecisive self." User @TurnerLevinson is also intrigued by the option, but hesitant to turn decision-making over to an algorithm: "Interesting new feature @netflix... but what kind of insane person just says, 'yolo, let's spin the Netflix wheel of fortune.'"

The hot "Shuffle Play" takes didn't stop there, with @stylesperiodt candidly calling out the need for such an option by Tweeting, "why the f**k does netflix have a shuffle play option lmfaoooo." South African Twitter user @SiphokaziKayana echoed that sentiment, doing so with slightly less colorful language: "Why does my Netflix have a 'shuffle play' option? Who would ever use this and why?" Meanwhile, Twitterer @Chabz_Classic believes the new option is a pleasant surprise, saying, "Lol Netflix now has a 'shuffle' button. This is something I needed that I didn't even know I need."

We're betting lots of Netflix users will have that same reaction, even as the internet will likely continue to be sharply divided on the usefulness of Netflix's latest streaming innovation. But hey, whatever side of the fray you fall on, we can at least agree "Shuffle Play" is way more useful than that "Auto Play" upgrade, right?