Netflix remains a top contender when it comes to streaming services, still struggling to stay on top after so many years.

While downloading and playing movies on our devices isn’t something we all do anymore, there are times when this feature comes in handy, like on long flights when the internet connection is down or when you don’t want to use all your Camping trips statistics.

Netflix has allowed users to download movies and TV shows for offline viewing since 2016, with the process being quite easy and streamlined.

Universal Rules for Netflix Downloads

There are a few rules regarding Netflix downloads that remain the same no matter which platform you use.

You will need an active subscription. Not all plans offer downloads; The Basic With Ads subscription is the only plan that won’t let you download any shows or movies, so you’ll need to choose the right Netflix subscription.

You will need an active internet connection when downloading movies and TV shows. Once downloaded, you don’t need to be connected to the internet.

The Available for Downloads option shows everything you can download for offline viewing. Plus, this section has recommendations based on your preferences, just like in the main menu. It’s easy to recalibrate your Netflix recommendations to retrain Netflix to show you your favorite content.

You can download videos on multiple devices. Netflix allows different numbers of downloads depending on the plan you’re on.

Downloaded movies and TV shows can only be viewed on the device you downloaded them on. For example, if you downloaded Stranger Things to your iPad but not your Android device, you can’t watch it on your Android when you’re offline.

Size and storage

First, know one important thing: downloading and streaming consume the same amount of data. This means that downloading videos is not saving any bandwidth for you. However, if you plan to watch that video multiple times, you’ll save bandwidth by downloading it first and then watching it offline.

If you download a video for offline viewing, it is stored locally on your hard drive or memory card. So obviously, you’ll want to control the size of each download.

You can choose the download quality in the Netflix app’s settings: Standard (720 x 480) or High. High quality varies depending on the hardware of the device as well as the best quality of the original video. The platform also features 4K video; You can adjust the video quality on Netflix to match your internet speed.

By one estimate, an hour of standard-quality video takes up about 250MB. You can also see the size of each downloaded video, which is great if you’re low on storage space.

The same settings will also display how much storage space Netflix is using. If you find that some movies and shows are taking up too much space on your device, you can delete all downloaded videos with one click.

Netflix downloads are not permanent

One thing you have to remember about Netflix downloads is that they are not a permanent fixture on your device.

While most Netflix originals are meant to stay, content the platform licenses from other content creators will only exist for a specific amount of time. When movies and TV shows are removed from the catalog, they will also be removed from people’s downloads. Netflix warns you before this happens by marking soon-to-expire titles in My Downloads.

Some videos also have a time limit. Remember, you do not “own” these videos. It’s like borrowing them from a library — Netflix’s library, in this instance. For some downloaded movies, once you press Play, you’ll see a notification telling you that you have 48 hours to watch it as many times as you want.

After a title expires, you can “renew” it a limited number of times. For this you do not need to download it again. Otherwise, you can remove it from My Downloads.

With the boring stuff out of the way, here’s how you can download Netflix videos on iOS, Android, and Windows.

Originally, Netflix only offered offline mode with iOS and Android, but now you can do it on Windows 10 and Windows 11 devices, Amazon Fire tablets, Chromebooks, and Chromebox devices as well. You’ll need to use the Netflix app on your laptop or computer, as it’s impossible to download content through a browser.

Download and install the official app for your operating system. Log in with your Netflix account and you will see this screen.

Remember when we said that not all videos can be downloaded? Yes, you need to look for the download button sign next to any movie or show to know if it is available. Click or tap on that button to download the video.

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