How to create a Video Streaming App like NetFlix?

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Posted: July 3, 2018

So what do you usually do after having an exhausting day at work? What are your most common discussion topics with your family and friends during a dinner or at leisure? How you prefer spending time with a person you like? Well, I am quite certain that at least one of the answers to these questions will somehow connect with movie streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, etc. Modern people really like making their dull evening interesting by watching shows and movies on Netflix. In fact, it is their favorite pass-time to just go and chill at Netflix.

Hands down, Netflix is among the most prominent apps out there and given the fact that modern technologies allow you to use this app on almost all gadgets varying from Smartphone’s to smart TVs, the success of Netflix was inevitable. In fact, there are a number of entrepreneurs who desire for such a business and they constantly try to gather information about the features of this app and how much does it cost. So, here we will explore it all about Netflix, like how can you make it, its benefits as well as crucial features.

Video Streaming Apps are the Future

With the success of Netflix and Amazon Prime, the world is everyday switching to video streaming apps and hence quite obviously the television fever is heading towards an extinction rapidly. There is a lot of web series that you might like or several of shows which you might desire to follow are exclusively available on these apps only.

Video streaming services rise, 2015-2021

Hence, it won’t be wrong to call the video streaming apps the future, after all, no one is keen on wasting their time watching old movies or shows that have already been watched by them quite a few times.

Related Article: How To Develop an On-Demand Video Streaming Mobile App?

Most Prominent Video Streaming Apps

Going by this list of most popular video streaming apps, you can easily figure out what features they have and where you can improve. This helps in figuring out the unique requirement of the video streaming app market.


This platform basically is for television shows. The most appealing feature is that the video streaming is a lot faster than other streaming apps like Amazon or Netflix. Here you are offered two different types of subscription. One is ad-free for $11.99 and another with commercials for $7.99.

Amazon Video

The impact of Amazon eCommerce platform has been huge in the past decade and things are no different with Amazon Prime Video that a live video streaming app. There are several subscriptions, however, the best one is for $99 annually. Additionally, you get Amazon Prime free shipping, can access Amazon photos, music and even its Kindle lending library.


It’s a globally renowned app for watching these online TV shows and movies. Among its many significant features, one is a solid selection of titles that are updated monthly. The thing that works most in their favor is that they appeal to the users offering their own original movies and app. Netflix can be accessed from a number of platforms and costs $7.99 per month. It can be said that Netflix has all things going around for them, though there is always some scope for the betterment.

Benefits of a Video Streaming App

The world of entertainment has taken a huge jump from TV to video streaming apps, so here are the many benefits:

Easy Multitasking: With video streaming apps users can complete important tasks while they watch their favorite show in background mode.

Video Streaming: There are a number of resolution options so that the users can choose the quality type as per their device & net connection.

Video streaming app interface example


Subscription: This subscribe feature works quite amazingly as it keeps users updated regarding new shows & episodes of a series that they are following. This feature updates users by popping a notification each time a new video is up on the channel, hence keep them informed.

Storage facility: As smart TVs have this feature to store live cricket matches or TV shows for “Watch Later”, the same way these apps have local storage feature so it enables users to download & save videos to watch later. Also, these apps are way more affordable and effective than smart TVs.

Video Sharing: In the times when people not just share their pictures, videos, or work via many platforms of social media but also earn from it, these apps are certain to shine as they offer many features like broadcasting, live video sharing and video conferencing.

Related Article: How Much Does It Cost To Develop a Music Streaming Mobile App?

Why make your own Video Streaming Website like Netflix, Hulu & Amazon Prime?

Most of the households in US and UK are already subscribed to Netflix and many such apps, and now its popularity can even in many countries of Asia as well. So what’s the reason behind this frenzy? Well, the reasons are countless. To start with the video content value is way higher as compared to the old-fashioned television. Second, the value of information is again incomparable. And then another interesting reason is that classic television doesn’t allow users to make a watch about what to watch. Like, they get to choose a channel, but not a show. However, when using video streaming apps, simply by logging in users can enjoy their favorites.

United States digital video / music revenue forecast in USD

Next comes Mobility, where the television seems to be lacking. Statistics show that more than half of the videos are watched on mobile devices. A report by Ericsson Mobility states that until 2020 mobile video streaming apps will grow by more than 50% per year.

Quite literally, the television world is dying. People are no more finicky about the expiry dates of their television connection and all of this just because of new age video streaming apps.

MVP of a Netflix-like app

Netflix is an app requiring a heavy backend to process streaming data transfer while it cost will differ as per the number of features it has. More the features, higher the cost. Simple. Hence, while starting, it works better to add only main features into the first version of the app as this directly reduces the cost. Later on, as the app gains popularity, more features can be added accordingly.

  • User registration: Well, this is the first and most important feature without which it is impossible making an app. Registering via email or social networking channels is a lot convenient for the users.
  • Design: Keeping the design simple is the key, as users instantly alienate themselves from apps which are hard-to-use. In fact, they are unlikely to give a try to these apps in future as well. Hence, for an app like Netflix, keep the design very simple as this way users can receive required information in second’s time.
  • Platform: As it comes to app development for Android or iOS, even though there is no substantial difference, but still prefer to choose just one OS in the beginning for the minimum viable product. However, in case you wish to have as many users to board installing your app, then you should get the app developed for both the versions of mobile OS. More platforms assure more users, obviously.
  • Payment gateway: When using Apple or Google OS, there is no need of payment gateway integration into the app, as both Android and iOS have their own mobile payment systems which enable users to make purchases in Google Play and App Store with just a simple click. Users only need to make payment for account registration. However, for other purposes like selling DVDs, etc., there are various payment gateways like Braintree, PayPal, and Stripe.
  • User Profile: This section is quite interesting as it allows users to add their “much-liked” movies here while they can add people to their account so they can also watch their own content in the app. Netflix offers this feature.
  • Block screenshots: Copyright protection should be integrated as this way users won’t be able to take images from any content.
  • Chat and comments: Communicating with the other users are easy as you simply need to leave a comment.
  • Push-notifications: Users receive a notification, every time a new series is released.
  • Multiple language support: It is best for a Netflix-app to support as many languages, as this way it will have as many users.
  • Content search: Going by user reviews, users can easily select genres and user reviews. They can check what their friends are watching and which films they like.
  • Settings: Users can select subtitles, audio tracks, play/pause, control volume, rewind, etc.

Additional Features

So the above-mentioned features were similar as Netflix app has, but when developing a new app, you can go ahead and add more features into the app so to make your app more interesting and unique.

  • Social sign-in: Allow users to share news & reviews via social media.
  • Video Streaming: Enable live broadcasting of specific sports events, shows, and TV programs.
  • Ratings & Reviews: Users should be enabled to rate movies and television programs, thus they can form their own rating as per other portal users opinion.
  • Add friends: Enable the users to add friends to the app check their profiles and integrate messaging feature.
  • Download feature: Allow users to download content on the Smartphone’s or tablets as this way they can watch even during no internet connection.
  • Video quality: This way user will be able to choose image resolution as per technical features and his/her requirements.
  • Geo-blocking: Owing to certain restrictions in various regions across the world, some of your app’s content can be forbidden in those regions. Hence, you must keep this in mind if you desire your app to be available to as many people.
  • Content recommendation algorithm: So, Netflix offers CineMatch system to provide content to users that are more interesting to them, the same way you can choose to integrate something on the same lines into other services, just as Netflix.

When you provide your users with all these features, they are certain to head to your app and stay captivated.

Things to keep in mind while developing such an app

Before beginning the development process, understand this simple fact that you can’t just quickly create this kind of complex app, and it is going to take a lot to attain the desired results.

So, here we discuss few things that are needed to be taken care of during app development process:

  • Execute a thorough research as well as interview your potential users discussing what functions these apps need to have and what the existing apps lack.
  • Get a list of unique functionalities. Once you have obtained a list of necessary functions, you can have an approximate estimate of how much it is going to cost to develop this kind of app.
  • UX requirement should be formulated on the basis of results attained after target audience study and with the help of UX designer and project manager.
  • Take care of Wireframing by building a clickable prototype and then test in on your target audience.
  • Create user stories.
  • Existing alternatives, like Netflix and its functionality, should also be considered.
  • Understand the kind of app you will be working on, like its specific features & purposes.

Final Word

Once you have set your mind to create your own video streaming app, start your search for a good app development company, who will understand your requirement with video streaming app as well as deliver the same. Ensure to keep in mind some aspects that must not be avoided, such as encoding, packaging, delivery, playback, transcoding, and video capturing. Once all these things in place and you have a skilled and experienced app development team, you are good to go.

If you would like to discuss more about On-demand video streaming app development, our mobile app development experts at Octal IT Solution are ready to help you. You can reach them at the following email.

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