Five life hacks for Netflix users

With its vast content library, including original shows, all at an affordable price and without ads, not for nothing is Netflix one of the most popular streaming services in the world. That said, nothing is perfect: Navigating Netflix’s catalog can be a pain; movies have a tendency to disappear every now and then; and in many countries certain content is wholly inaccessible. However, none of those issues is insurmountable. Here’s how you can overcome them.

How to find hidden content categories

Netflix lets you search for content by various parameters: title, cast, genre, and so forth. If you’re looking through movie titles and actors’ names, that’s pretty straightforward. When it comes to genre, however, the sheer number of categories and subcategories can become a bit much. Science fiction and fantasy are split into ten subgroups, to give you some idea. And what you need to enter in the search box to get to the films you want to see can be far from intuitive.

To solve the problem of navigating by genre, movie buffs compiled a list of Netflix category codes. The codes are attached to URLs that take the user to collections of shows and movies from relevant genres and subgenres. To open a particular collection, just type into your browser’s address bar, replacing #### with the category code. You can view the list of categories here.

How to set up an online movie party

At present, because of the COVID-19 pandemic and related restrictions, it might not be possible to host movie parties with friends, and watching movies alone is not always fun. You can, of course, hook up on Zoom and try to watch that way. But most likely, if you do that, you’ll all end up watching at your own pace, watching over a slower connection, pausing at different times, and so on, making it hard to interact.

The problem of remote synchronization was so pressing that a team of enthusiasts created Teleparty, a free plugin for Google Chrome. With it, friends can watch their favorite movies and TV shows not only on Netflix, but also on Disney+, Hulu, and HBO, as if they were all in the same room — and use the chat feature to discuss them.

Teleparty’s one snag is its inability to let all attendants share one account, as people do during in-person get-togethers. For remote sessions, everyone needs their own account capable of streaming the same broadcast. Outside of that limitation, however, there’s really nothing to it. Simply select the video you want, open the plugin, use it to generate a link, send the link to your friends, and get to watching.

How to get mood-based recommendations

Experienced Netflixers know the service lets you create multiple profiles in one account, for example, for family members. This feature can also come in handy for people simply looking to maximize Netflix’s recommendations system.

That’s because the service learns about your preferences from your viewing history, likes and dislikes, and other interactions with the interface. If your tastes are simple and predictable, it works well. But what if they depend on your mood, the weather, or the position of the stars in the sky?

For example, on a sunny afternoon, you might fancy a rom-com or a movie about animals, whereas during a

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