Amazon has introduced a new Watch Party feature in India that allows group streaming on Prime Video platform. The streaming feature enables users to host and participate in 'Watch Party' with synchronised playback option. Notably, it only works with Prime web client, and a single watch party session can include up to 100 participants. The feature was first rolled out to Amazon Prime users in the US back in July and started reaching other markets like the UK, gradually.
Amazon shared the development today, and the Watch Party feature is live in India. The company explains that each participant during the streaming session must have a Prime membership or a Prime Video subscription. Additionally, only the host of the watch party session has controls to play, pause, and skip the video. There's also a dedicated chat tab that lets participants send messages while the virtual movie session is on. As mentioned, the feature only works with Amazon Prime Video web client and users who will try to open it on the app will be redirected to the phone's web browser automatically.
To start the Watch Party on the streaming platform, open the Prime Video a web browser, select the TV show or movie you want to group stream, click on the Watch Party button that sits next to the share option, enter a name, and send the copied link to each participant. The feature essentially allows users to gather up virtually for movies amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The e-commerce company hopes that the Watch Party on Prime will promote social distancing during the pandemic. Currently in India, the Amazon Prime subscription costs Rs 129 per month or Rs 999 annually. The subscription also provides access to HD quality music on Amazon Music, Prime membership on Amazon.com, and more.
Notably, the Watch Party on Prime Videos works without any plug-ins unlike Teleparty feature (formerly called Netflix Party) that requires a web extension to group stream Netflix movies and shows. Similarly, users can host Watch Party on multiple web browsers as Teleparty only works with Google Chrome browser, at the moment.