1 | Add ratings and trailers
Nothing screams 'waste of time' more than trawling through Netflix for 45 minutes before choosing a film and realising it's a dud 15 minutes in. Well, Netflix Enhancer Suite's on hand to void that issue – adding Rotten Tomatoes ratings, IMDb links and trailers to almost every available film, this free Chrome add-on will aid you in rapidly identifying the must-sees from the clunkers.
2 | Kill buffering
We've all been there – you're engrossed in a particularly dramatic episode of House of Cards and BOOM: the dreaded buffer logo appears. Turns out you can put a stop to it. Hit Shift + Alt and left-click your mouse (Shift + Option + Click for Mac users) and you'll be directed to a diagnostic window where you can manually select your chosen buffering rate. Gamechanger.
3 | Watch films at the same time as your friends
Changing the face of nights in alone is Rabbit, a group chat service that allows you to watch Netflix (and other streaming services) with other "guests" through one shared browser where you can discuss what it is you're viewing. Handy for when you're freaking out watching those final Breaking Bad episodes.
4 | Play around with the subtitles
If you're a stickler for the smaller details, you may be pleased to discover you can switch up the appearance of the default yellow sans-serif subtitles. Go to Your Account, My Profile and select Subtitle Appearance – here you can experiment with colour, font and size to your heart's content. As we said, one for the sticklers.
5 | Turn your phone into a remote
If you're watching Netflix on your TV via your laptop and need to pause or rewind something, it usually involves getting off the sofa, sometimes even entering a password to unlock your computer. Nightmare. Instead, download Apptui onto both your iPhone and computer, connect to the same Wi-Fi network and then load the app via your phone; for PS3 users, simply load Netflix, connect your phone to the same network and log in to the same account. Et voilà – a working Netflix remote.
6 | Use these sneaky shortcuts
For all those who enjoy a dose of Netflix with your laptop close at hand, these computer shortcuts are nothing short of mandatory.
- The Spacebar and Enter keys function as a pause/play button.
- PgDn pauses, while PgUp plays.
- F will take you to full screen; Esc will take you out of it.
- Shift+Left Arrow will rewind, while Shift+Right Arrow will fast forward.
- Up and Down Arrows should impact volume levels.
M is a toggle for mute.
7 | Get help from these sister sites
Bookmark Flix Roulette and Flix Search immediately; the former is a site which takes the decision-making out of your hands by randomly selecting a film for you (don't worry, you can limit it to genre and star rating) while the latter is an extensive database of every film and TV show available across every region. For a full bible of what's on Netflix UK, take a look at newonnetflix.info.
8 | Watch in HD (without destroying your data)
Go to your Account Plan and click on Playback Settings and you'll see you've probably been streaming Netflix's automatic definition settings. Change to High, and you'll be able to enjoy the highest possible playback quality the site can offer for no extra charge. Just so you know, this will burn through your mobile data if you watch outside of Wi-Fi, so stay alert.
9 | Watch at specific times of the day for better quality
Chances are, if you're trying to watch a film at 9pm on a Sunday, your HD is going to be affected by "rush-hour traffic." Staying up later or, of course, getting up a few hours earlier are both good ideas if there is something you're desperate to watch in 1080p HD.