Movies Anywhere Launches Co-Viewing ‘Watch Together’ Experience


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(Image: Movies Anywhere)

Social distancing has never been so entertaining: Streaming platform Movies Anywhere this week launched a co-viewing experience that allows users to watch together, even when they’re apart.

The new feature, inventively named Watch Together, lets friends and family host remote movie nights—no plugin needed. Unlike some recent virtual viewing ventures, which require separate downloads and specific browsers, Movies Anywhere promises a “fully integrated, seamless” affair across mobile, web, and most connected smart TVs.

It is also currently the only platform to enable synced viewings from purchased movie collections, so everyone doesn’t need to shell out for the same film. Watch Together pairs easily with the Screen Pass beta, introduced in March to let users invite family and friends to check out new releases, trending flicks, and old favorites.

Simply send a text from the mobile app to as many as three recipients (all of whom must be signed up for a free Movies Anywhere account). They then have seven days to accept the offer, and another 14 to access the film. Once started, the movie is available for 72 hours. “All you need is a Movies Anywhere account and a movie in your collection,” according to the Watch Together FAQ. Once logged in, visit the title page of your chosen film, select the Watch Together button, and copy the room code to share with up to nine guests.

While the host holds the power to play, pause, rewind, or fast forward, partakers may request specific actions by sending preset messages. Everyone, meanwhile, can react in real time using custom emojis; anyone who wishes not to be interrupted can toggle off reactions. Text conversations (like those that anchor Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu group viewings) are not currently supported.

“Note that all guests must have either purchased, redeemed a digital code, or received a Screen Pass for the selected movie in order to watch together,” the company pointed out. “Only guests with a profile rating set to PG-13 or higher are eligible to participate.”

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