Netflix Is Testing a TikTok-Like Feed for Kids

Netflix Is Testing a TikTok-Like Feed for Kids
Photo: Netflix

Forging ahead with plans to attract new users with TikTok-like short video feeds, Netflix will begin testing a “Kids Clips” feature on its iOS app this week that will help to expose young viewers to its vast library of children’s content.

Much like “Fast Laughs” — the TikTok-style infinite scroll of short comedy content the platform debuted earlier this year — “Kids Clips” will function as a sort of highlight reel for Netflix’s children’s programming, and comes as Netflix is increasingly competing with social media platforms like TikTok for eyeballs. The feature was first spotted by iOS developer Steve Moser, who discovered it hidden in code and passed the news on to Bloomberg News.

According to Bloomberg, the new feed will begin rolling out this week for U.S.-based and Spanish-speaking Latin American users, as well as in key markets in Canada, Australia, and Ireland. Unlike Fast Laughs, which is a vertical feed a la TikTok, Kids Clips will be a horizontal feed — meaning users will need to tilt their phones into landscape mode in order to scroll through — and videos will take up the entire screen. Presumably to cut down on the brain rot that is in all likelihood affecting TikTok-addicted adults as we speak, Netflix’s child users will reportedly be limited to watching 10 to 20 clips at a time. The clips will be from longer Netflix shows and movies, not short-form originals.

The streaming giant has alluded to the threat of TikTok in recent earnings reports, citing the platform as one of the key competitors responsible for tempting users to expend their precious viewing time outside of Netflix.

“TikTok’s growth is astounding,” the streaming service wrote in a July 16 letter to shareholders, “showing the fluidity of internet entertainment.”

Seemingly inspired by the way TikTok’s snackable content stimulates users and encourages them to spend more time on the platform, Netflix has been increasingly tinkering with the ways in which users experience its content on mobile. In addition to the new short video feeds, the platform has also been experimenting with an instant-streaming shuffle feature called “Play Something,” which Android users can use to queue up algorithmically selected shows and movies based on their viewing histories and preferences.