Amazon Prime Adds Watch Party for Co-Viewing With Up to 100 Friends

Illustration for article titled Amazon Prime Adds Watch Party for Co-Viewing With Up to 100 Friends
Screenshot: Gizmodo

Amazon’s streaming service is introducing a co-viewing option to stream movies and TV shows with up to 100 other Prime Video account holders, a nifty feature that’s already officially available on platforms like Hulu and HBO.

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The native tool is now available to Prime Video subscribers in the U.S. streaming via a desktop browser—an exception being Safari (other platforms and apps aren’t currently supported). An Amazon spokesperson told Gizmodo by email that users will now be able to simultaneously stream thousands of titles in its catalog, including Amazon originals as well as titles like Captain America: The First Avenger and Knives Out.

Illustration for article titled Amazon Prime Adds Watch Party for Co-Viewing With Up to 100 Friends
Image: Amazon
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Like other co-viewing apps, Amazon’s Watch Party includes a chat room tool to allow viewing participants to chat while streaming their show or movie. Users can easily add participants—though again, you have to have a Prime account—by sharing a unique link to their co-viewing room.

To start a session, click the Watch Party icon on a title’s landing page (you’ll find it to the right of the Trailer and Watchlist buttons). You’ll be able to enter a chat name on the following screen to let folks know who you are, which will come in handy if you’re streaming with anything close to the absolutely dumb cap of 100 other viewers. Then, share the link and start the title. Everyone will see the same film or series in sync in real-time.

And that’s it. No more hunting for third-party hosting apps, and no more attempting to smash that “play” button at the same time as your quarantined loved ones. Thank god. We’re all just doing our best right now.

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DISCUSSION

Honestly, the only thing I want is for a movie to sync for everyone. We’ve done it before with “OK, everybody start the movie now,” and then just used Hangouts/etc to video chat while the movie was going on in the background. But the different videos were never *quite* synced up, and so there was always some discrepancy from the background of the chat.

Also only worked on movies that everyone had seen a billion times (say, The Princess Bride).