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17 Netflix Tricks to Maximize Your Subscription

17 Netflix Tricks to Maximize Your Subscription

Netflix offers a wide range of entertainment. Are you maximizing your subscription? The service is simple enough for non-techies. Beyond the welcoming home page, there are tools and tricks to master binge-watching, browsing, and more. We have tried-and-true tips and hacks for finding the best streaming service content, a complete list of niche subcategories, and platform optimization.

1. Save Mobile Data (or Use a Ton)

HD streaming eats data. If you use Netflix on mobile, stay within your data limit. To avoid this, switch the app’s “Cellular Data Usage” setting to Wi-Fi only, low, medium, high, or unlimited. Netflix uses 1 gigabyte every 20 minutes with the “unlimited” option.

Only streaming on Wi-Fi will save your mobile data. While at home with Wi-Fi, download anything you want to watch, and data limits will never be an issue again.

2. Watch in HD/UHD

Make sure your Netflix subscription supports high-definition viewing before going to the playback settings menu. Bonus: Turn off auto-play in the playback settings menu.

Netflix Premium subscribers with Ultra HD TVs can search for “4K” or “HDR” to watch UHD content. Life in Color With David Attenborough never looked so real!

3. Approve Better Suggestions

Drop the five-star rating. Siskel and Ebert-style Netflix simplified. Rate what you watch to refine your recs. Almighty algorithm will adjust.

Your account profiles can customize your viewing experience. Set one up to share with your roommate for shows you watch together to avoid being swayed by a binge.

4. Better Films

Netflix’s vast catalog makes finding something to watch half the fun and most of the challenge. Several sites sorted movies by Rotten Tomatoes score using Netflix’s public API years ago, and Netflix’s 2014 API revocation killed many of these sites. A few third-party sites survive through workarounds or Netflix private API access.

Try AllFlicks and InstantWatcher. The Best of Netflix subreddit offers more suggestions. Visit Vulture’s What to Stream Now hub too.

5. Unlock Hidden Categories

Netflix has over ten thousand categories. The service only shows a small portion of its catalog, making it hard to dig deep from the main site/app. What’s On Netflix and Netflix-codes.com crack the number codes to find “violent crime movies,” “campy late-night comedies,” and “feel-good coming-of-age movies.”

To access these categories and many more, take the number codes from the links above and plug them in after this URL: netflix.com/browse/genre/ Then the code for “recently added” (1592210) would be plugged in like this: netflix.com/browse/genre/1592210.

Boom. You now have only “recently added” options. The same applies to hundreds of categories.

6. Search Beyond Titles

Netflix’s search bar does more. Does the movie title elude you? Search by the star, plot keyword, or suspected subcategory. Searching for “Sam Neill,” “misadventure,” or “quirky independent drama” yields Hunt for the Wilderpeople.

Want the streaming platform’s award-winning original content? Search “Netflix.” The results even separate Emmy and Oscar nominees and FYC campaigns.

7. Search Expertly

Movies or TV Shows, then genres, on Netflix. How do you sort by release date or A-Z? Click the four-block button in the upper right corner. This changes List to Grid and provides a pulldown menu with four title prioritization options: Suggestions For You, A-Z, Z-A, and Year Released. Keep to the top of the “Year Released” results for new releases; older titles are at the bottom.

8. Shuffle Instead of Searching

You may need more time to look around. You may want entertaining background noise while cooking dinner or cleaning the living room. Stress-free scrolling. “Play Something” lets Netflix decide. After logging in, the option appears under your profile name and as a menu bar button under the home icon. Click it for a personalized Netflix playlist.

9. Find the Best Streaming ISP

Your internet service provider’s Netflix performance is hard to assess. Netflix’s ISP speed index ranks ISPs in many countries by how well they can handle binges.

Fast.com lets you test your provider’s internet speed.

10. Remember Keyboard Shortcuts

Netflix has many mouse-free shortcuts. For quick reference:

  • Space bar and enter essential pause/play.

PgUp plays while PgDn pauses.

  • F toggles fullscreen; Esc exits.
  • Shift+left arrow rewinds, shift+right arrow fast-forwards.

The Left and right arrow keys skip 20 seconds.

  • Up and down arrows affect volume.

M mutes.

11. Subs or Dubs?

Netflix offers subtitles and alternate language tracks for many foreign-language titles. Select one under “Audio & Subtitles” in the options panel. This may include an “audio description” for the blind. Search for movies and shows by subtitle, language tracks, or audio description.

12. Clarify Subtitles

Change subtitle font size or color? Subtitle Appearance lets you customize drop shadows and backgrounds.

13. Pick Your Speed

Netflix’s Playback Speed dial slows down videos to half or 1.5x speed, which is controversial. Fighting rapid-fire dialogue? More episodes than hours? The site’s pop-up play menu toggle controls speed.

14. Dump Freeloading Friends

If you’ve shared your Netflix password for years, you never know how many leeches are using it (and seriously messing with your algorithm). Sign out of all devices on your account page to delete them all. Change your password while suppressing maniacal laughter. If you do, we won’t judge.

15. Test New Features in Early

Netflix constantly adds features to improve viewing. Select “test participation” on your account page to get first dibs.

16. Enjoy New Options Abroad

You can log into your queue from anywhere. Netflix is available worldwide, so check its map to ensure your subscription works on your next international vacation. Licenses vary by region, so titles may change. You can also be a tourist.

17. Keep Secrets

Every couple watches one show together. Maybe you can’t wait to see what happens next. Don’t want your partner to know you peeked? “Viewing Activity” in your account profile. Your recent viewings appear in order. Click the prohibited icon, which looks like a no-smoking sign without the cigarette, to remove the title from your history within 24 hours. If only all secret shames were erased so easily!

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