100 people can stream together with Amazon Prime Video’s “Watch Party”.

Sajid Ali -

100 people can stream together with Amazon Prime Video’s “Watch Party”.

Streaming giants are in a rat race to lure their subscribers during the COVID-19 pandemic to their respective platforms with attractive titles adding on to their library day in and out. And that wasn’t enough Amazon Prime Video has jumped into the “Watch Party” pool, a streaming trend that has caught up during this lockdown crisis. 

Prime Video is gradually rolling out the “Watch Party”, it’s a version of a native social-viewing experience, stated by the company on Monday. It will be available for users on desktop PCs, browser-based Prime Video watch party which lets up to 100 people watch a TV show or movie together in one virtual room.

This feature lets the Prime member's host and participates in a Watch Party, with synchronized playback controlled by the host, and a chat sidebar to the right of the main video. This feature has now been rolled out for many shows and films, and will soon be available to the entirety of the platform.

Watch Party is not a new feature and has been around for a few years now. But with the social distancing gaining more momentum and of course, streaming platforms are eager at this point to promote anything and everything that could help them gain or retain more subscribers. 

A start-up Scener launched a co-viewing option for HBO in addition to its Netflix option, and there’s also a plug-in called “Netflix Party” unaffiliated with Netflix. We’ve also seen Hulu rolling out a watch party feature last month, which can accommodate 8 viewers at a time.

Earlier Amazon started testing out the concept in April with Twitch (A gaming streaming platform), where the Twitch creators have had the ability to pick titles from Prime catalogue to provide play-by-play for an episode or a movie playing on the main screen. It’s important that both the streamers and the viewers need to hold Prime accounts.

Prime Video Watch Party customers can select from all VOD titles which are included as part of the Prime membership. However, VOD titles to rent or own purchased from Amazon won’t be included. Once you set up a watch party in Prime Video, you receive a dedicated link to share with your friends and family. 

This watch party feature is available for all Amazon Originals, including Fleabag, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, Hanna, Troop Zero Mindy Kailing’s Late Night, Guava Island, The Big Sick, The Boys, Homecoming and My Spy.

This surely is going to become a thing for friends and family who used to host traditional watch parties at home during the weekends or holidays. With social distancing in place, this feature is going to make Amazon Prime Video a notch above its competitors, because it’s a native feature whereas others are a third party development. So, start binging with your gang!

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