Netflix’s new ‘Play Something’ button is fine, but it’s not enough

The long-awaited Netflix shuffle button is here.

Next time you’re unsure what to watch on Netflix, just click “Play Something,” and the service will pick a movie or TV show according to your personal tastes. You’ll find the new button on Netflix’s profile selection page, in the sidebar menu, and on the 10th row of the home screen. If Netflix’s algorithms choose unwisely, you can also hit “Play Something Else,” which will either bring up a new pick, resume a show you’re already watching, or start a selection from your watch list.

Netflix began testing the Play Something button eight months ago and seems to be rolling it out with some fanfare. (It’s announcing the feature in a blog post, with a goofy video of a cartoon remote whose buttons are tired of being pushed.) It’s arguably the company’s most concerted effort yet to cure streaming indecisiveness, and it arrives at a time when there’s more to watch than ever, both from Netflix and from a wave of new streaming competitors.


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