Netflix’s new shuffle option has finally rolled out to everyone after months of testing. But, with a few clever workarounds, you can shuffle through Netflix’s vast library of content in a few other ways too.
How to use Netflix’s shuffle feature
On your “Who’s watching Netflix?” screen, you’ll see a new “Shuffle Play” option; you might also see a “Play Something” option on your main Netflix screen, which will then jump you to a “random” Netflix show or movie — one that’s been curated based on the content you already like, and not a true shuffle, as Variety explains.
Netflix having a shuffle option is reckless pic.twitter.com/xHXiOcV3k9
— Margo (@bugzfeed) August 17, 2020
According to Netflix, when you click “Play Something Else” you’ll get:
- A brand new series or film,
- A series or film you’re already watching,
- A series or film on your list, or
- An unfinished series or film you may want to revisit.
The “Play Something” button will appear in multiple places on your TV including:
- Underneath your profile name
- The tenth row on your Netflix homepage
- The navigation menu on the left of the screen
Browser extensions that randomize Netflix
If you’re looking for other ways to shuffle Netflix, here are some options.
If you’re a Chrome user, I recommend checking out the following:
- ShuffleFlix: Lets you jump to a random episode for whatever series you’re watching. You won’t just get some crazy Netflix show you have no interest in viewing; instead, the experience is akin to all those times you would turn on Law & Order and swear you’ve never seen the random episode you happened upon, even though you’d probably actually seen it six times already over your years of watching reruns.
- Randflix: Same deal, different extension. If you’re having issues with ShuffleFlix, Randflix is a good alternative.
- Netflix Shuffle: Look! It’s the Firefox version of those other “shuffle through a random episode” extensions. It only works with a certain list of shows, though, make the option less impressive for Firefox fans. If you only care about one show — say, The Office — you can probably find specific randomizer extensions for that, too.
- Random Star Trek is just a website, not a browser extension, but it’s the perfect go-to if you want to shuffle your way through all the Star Trek franchises on Netflix (or Hulu).
iOS Shortcuts for Netflix shuffling
If you like to watch Netflix on iOS, you have a few options to help you pull up random Netflix content (or episodes of a particular series). Here are two general ones, and here is one specifically geared toward The Office. You can probably find more built around specific shows, or at least use these as the basis to create a randomizer for your own favourite series.
As for Android…
I haven’t found a good option for Android, which is a bummer. You can always use the slightly more generic Netflix Roulette website to assign you a random show or movie to watch on Netflix. It’s not as seamless as using an app or hack that lets you jump to a new show within your Netflix app, but it’s something if you’re looking for a shuffle option for the streaming service.
Note: This article was originally published in August 2020 but has been updated to reflect the rollout of Netflix’s Shuffle feature.