Movies are more fun when you watch them with other people. However, it is not always possible to watch movies together if your family or friends do not live in the same place and cannot come to visit you.SummaryHow do Watch Parties work?1. Netflix party2. Amazon Prime Watch Party3. Hulu Watch4 party. Scener5. TwoSeven6. Kast7. Syncplay8. Plex Watch togetherYou can also watch YouTube together
That's where the apps and services below come in. Each of them lets you sync a movie to watch together online, no matter how far apart you are in real life. We'll show you how to use each one to get movie night back on track.
Most of these apps and services work the same way, so the first thing to do is to explain how they work.
The first point to mention is that everyone watching the movie needs an active subscription to any streaming service. If you want to watch Netflix together, you all need to have a Netflix subscription.
Moreover, the majority of these services only work on a computer and many of them only work with Google Chrome. If you plan to watch a movie on your TV, you should know how to cast your computer to your TV before you start.
Once you're up and running, most of these services let you chat with your friends in a screen-edge chat room. You can usually minimize this if you want to focus on the movie, but you might miss some hilarious commentary if you do.
The last thing to remember is that these services sync the video for everyone watching it. This means that if one person takes a break, it also stops for everyone else. So think twice before hitting the spacebar to get yourself some extra snacks.
Netflix is by far the most popular video streaming service, with tons of TV shows and movies you can watch online. If you plan to watch Netflix movies only together, the best way to do that is to use the Netflix Party Chrome extension.
Related:How to use Netflix Party
After adding Netflix Party to Google Chrome, upload a movie to Netflix and create a party link to share with your friends. When they join, Netflix Party syncs the movie for everyone and lets you chat with each other in the sidebar.
If you prefer the movie selection on Prime Video, you can use Amazon's Watch Party feature to watch movies online together. While in beta mode, this feature is only available to US Amazon Prime subscribers and does not work with Safari.
But on the plus side, Watch Party promises to let you chat with up to 100 friends at once and works with any movie or TV show included with Prime.
To start an Amazon Prime Watch Party, find the movie you want to watch on a computer browser and click the Watch Party button button in the description. Choose a name to use in the chat room, invite your friends, then tap Play.
Hulu also has a built-in Watch Party feature that lets you watch a movie with up to eight friends online. Again, this Watch Party only works in supported computer browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge.
All Watch Party members need an active Hulu (ad-free) subscription, which means you can't use Watch Party if you're on the ad-supported version of Hulu.
To start a Hulu Watch Party, find the movie you want to watch and click the Watch Party button icon in the details section. It looks like three people with a gambling symbol on them. Then use the channel icon to copy and share the Watch Party link with your friends.
Related:3 Ways to Host a Hulu Watch Party
Scener calls itself a virtual movie theater and it's a great option if you don't want to be tied down to just one video streaming service. With Scener, you can watch movies together from any of the following services:
All you need to do is install the Scener extension for Google Chrome, find the movie you want to watch on your service of choice, then use Scener to start hosting a viewing party. P>
A private cinema lets you sync movie and video chat with up to 10 friends. You can also create a public live theater to share your party with up to 1 million other guests.
TwoSeven is a web application that lets you watch movies together across a range of services. There's no limit to the number of people who can join a watch party in TwoSeven and you can even allow everyone to use their own webcam and microphone while they watch.
TwoSeven works with the following video streaming services:
Hulu and Disney+ are also available if you upgrade to the premium plan.
Visit the TwoSeven website to create an account, then create a watch party using the Watch Now link and share the URL with as many friends as you want. To watch movies on Netflix, Amazon or HBO Max, you need to install the TwoSeven extension for Chrome or Firefox.
If you don't subscribe to any video streaming service — or if all of your friends subscribe to different services — you can still watch a movie online together using Kast. This web application allows you to share your screen with up to 100 people. Or you can all watch an existing movie from Kast's curated library.
Kast offers a selection of indie films alongside bigger movies, like The Hunger Games or Layer Cake, which are available through Tubi. Everything is available for free if you want to watch some ads. Or you can sign up for Kast Premium and get rid of ads entirely.
Just head over to the Kast website and open the web app to get started. It prompts you to create an account and set up a new party to invite your friends to.
Syncplay is an open source application that you can use to sync media players like VLC to your computer. This means you can use Syncplay to watch your local files at the same time as your friends, although you have to make sure you each have the same file downloaded to keep everything in sync.
You can still send text chat messages to your friends, but you have to use a different app if you want to use voice chat or video chat while watching the movie. Syncplay suggests you use Skype or Mumble for this.
Once you've selected the right file and started playback, Syncplay makes sure the video plays at exactly the same time on everyone's computer. It even automatically stops if someone stops playback for a bathroom break.
Plex Watch Together lets you watch movies online from Plex's Movies &TV library or your own personal media. When you use Plex's Watch Together feature, it syncs everyone's video so you're all watching them at the same time. However, it does not offer a chat function.
Related:How to watch Plex with friends online
Unlike all the other options on this list, the Plex Watch bundle is available for Android and iOS devices as well as your computer.
All you need to do to get started is select the More (… ) next to a particular movie in Plex, then click Watch Together and invite friends to join you.
While we all love movie nights, sometimes it's just as fun to sit in front of YouTube and watch shorter videos for a few hours. If that sounds more like your style, you'll be happy to know that there are plenty of online services for you to watch YouTube videos together.
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