How to organise remote binge-watching sessions with your friends on the web
Just because you have to maintain social distance, it doesn’t mean you can’t have movie dates with friends. There are quite a few web resources that will let you watch TV shows and films with your pals, and will even allow you to host YouTube marathons.
This resource makes it easy for friends and family to watch videos together regardless of where they are in the world. Simply create a room for free and share its link via messenger or email. Recipients can then click on the address and enjoy the same content as you, with you.
To stream videos, you have to first select the source—YouTube, Vimeo, Twitch, Deezer, Instagram, Twitter, DailyMotion, Facebook (among others)—from the dropdown above the screen, and search for what you want to view. Then, choose from the results displayed below.
Alternatively, you can paste a direct link to what you want to watch. You and the other participants in the room can also add to its playlist by clicking on the ‘+’ sign at the bottom of each video.
Everyone in the room sees the same video; accordingly, when a user clicks on the Pause button, it is paused for every user in the room. You also get a chat window, with webcam support, to communicate with yourfriends who have joined the room.
A Watch2Gether room is auto-deleted after 24 hours, but create a free account and you get the option to save it. Other benefits include a custom avatar image, a fixed nickname, as well as an overview of all rooms you participate in.
The rooms you create are private by default; Watch2Gether does not publish the link to them anywhere. The site also supports full-screen viewing.
- My Circle TV (www.mycircle.tv)
My Circle TV is another fantastic resource that lets you stream videos with your friends and family, simultaneously, after you create a free room and share its link with them.
Now while this website does not support video chat, it sports a very intuitive six-tab user interface: ‘Chat’ for text-based messaging; ‘Users’ that shows details of the participants like their video-buffering status and if they have their mics ON in the room; ‘My Video’ that allows participants to stream content from cloud sources such as Dropbox, Google Drive and myCloud;
‘History’ for a list of videos played in the room; ‘Playlists’ that displays all the videos that have been added by users, and finally ‘Search’ that lets you look for content on YouTube, Vimeo, and SoundCloud to add to your playlist.
Now, while you don’t need to sign up for an account on My Circle TV, if you create one you get a custom user space; you can find all your latest activities in History every time you sign back in, and you also get 5GB free storage on myCloud.
- TwoSeven (www. twoseven.xyz)
Unlike Watch2Gether and My Circle TV, TwoSeven does not allow you to create a temporary room, and every user is required to sign-up for a free account. Also, you can’t search for videos or create playlists from within its interface, so you will always need to paste the direct links of what you want to watch.
On the plus side, TwoSeven has a clutter-free interface that makes it easier to focus on the content you’re viewing. You get video, voice and text chat, and this service also lets you share personal clips to view together with each other.
The site streams content from YouTube, Vimeo, and any other URL that “typically end with .mp4”.