Netflix Download Manual: Get Movies & Shows to Watch Offline on iPhone or iPad (2019)

Watching Netflix offline was a dream until fairly recently. In the past, watching Netflix offline wasn't possible because there was no way to download Netflix movies or TV shows. But that’s all changed and now learning how to download Netflix movies and TV shows for offline viewing is easy with a quick how-to. We’ll cover how to download movies from Netflix, how to watch offline, whether or not you can download Netflix on Mac or PC, which Netflix downloads are available, and how to change Netflix settings from standard to higher video quality for your downloads. Subscribers have been wanting to watch Netflix offline on their iPads or iPhones for years, and now Netflix has made it easy. Here's how to watch Netflix offline on iPhone and iPad.

Related: How Much Data Does Netflix Use on iPhone? (& What to Do About It)

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We all want to know how to download Netflix movies onto our iPads or iPhones, especially for long flights and car rides with children, where offline Netflix would be a godsend. Luckily, Netflix finally gave the people what they want. With a little planning ahead, you can download Netflix movies or TV shows and then watch them offline. When you download Netflix content, it’s saved offline to your iOS device, such as your iPad or iPhone. 

While Netflix has made it easy to download movies and TV shows to your iPad or iPhone, the same cannot be said for offline Netflix movies on Mac. This is largely due to the fact that there is no official Netflix app for Mac. I’ll cover my recommendations for watching Netflix offline on a Mac below, but it’s not something I condone and is in violation of Netflix’s Terms & Conditions. But on your iPad or iPhone, you can download and watch all the Netflix movies and shows that can fit on your device.

Can You Watch Netflix on an Airplane?

In one word, yes! But make sure you plan ahead. When you’re packing for your trip, get on your iPhone or iPad and figure out what content you want to download for offline viewing. Use our tip below to do it. Then when you’re on the plane, the Netflix movies or TV shows you downloaded will be ready and waiting. When you’re done watching, be sure to delete the saved content, as it does take up space on your iOS device. Now, let’s jump into how todownload and watch Netflix offline.

How to Download Movies from Netflix & Watch Offline on iPad or iPhone

  • First, you need to update (or download) Netflix. To do this, open the App Store, tap Updates, and tap Update next to Netflix. Once your Netflix app has the latest update installed, open the app.

  • When you first open the app after updating Netflix, you’ll likely see the screenshot below informing you of the new offline watching feature. You can tap Find something to download or dismiss it.

  • However, the typical way you’ll access downloadable Netflix content is by tapping the Menu icon in the upper left corner that looks like three horizontal lines.

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  • From the menu, tap Available for Download.

  • Find a show or movie you want to download for offline viewing. Tap on it.

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  • Look for the download button. Tap the download button to download a full movie. You’ll need to download each individual episode of a series.

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Where to Find Your Netflix Downloads: My Downloads

  • Once your show or movie has downloaded, open the main Menu up again and tap My Downloads. Your list of downloads is easily accessible from here.

  • Tap on the show or movie you have downloaded to watch it offline.

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Movies to Watch on Netflix: Options to Download 

There are far too many movies and TV shows available for download on Netflix to list here, which is a good sign for subscribers who want to watch Netflix offline. Some popular titles available for download on Netflix include:

  • Tidying Up with Marie Kondo
  • Sherlock
  • The Crown
  • Stranger Things

And so much more. If you’re looking for something in particular, visit the Available for Download tab, found in the main menu on Netflix. Then tap the search icon, find the show or movie you’re looking for, and tap on. If you see a download icon, it’s available for offline viewing. If not, you’ll need the good old Wi-Fi connection to watch it.

Netflix Download Limit & How to Delete Downloads

Netflix limits the amount of content you're allowed to download at any one time; if you've exceeded the limit, you'll see a notice like the one below on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch.

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  • Once you’re ready to remove a download from your offline viewing list, you can swipe left on the download and tap the X to delete it.

  • Or tap Edit in the upper right corner and tap the X next to each download you want to remove.

How to Delete All Downloaded Netflix Content

  • In the Netflix app, open the main menu by tapping the three horizontal lines.

  • Scroll down and tap App Settings.

  • Tap Delete All Downloads.

  • Confirm Delete.

Why Does My Netflix Download Say Expired & What Can I Do about It?

Netflix movies and TV shows expire at different times. Downloaded content with less than seven days left before expiration will show you how much time is left in the My Downloads section of the Netflix app. Some downloaded content expires 48 hours after you press play; in this case, you’ll be able to see how many hours are left in the My Downloads section. Since downloaded Netflix movies and TV shows expire, I recommend downloading content the night before your trip, especially if you’re planning to watch Netflix offline on a plane.

What if a show expires before I got a chance to watch it?

Get back to a Wi-Fi connection, delete the download, then re-download the movie or TV show from Netflix. The expiration timer will start over.

Netflix Download Storage & Changing Video Quality

In the Netflix settings menu, you can see a snapshot chart of your device and how much storage is used, how much storage is free, and how much storage Netflix downloads are taking up. At a glance, it’s easy to tell whether or not there’s enough space to download more content or if you need to delete some older movies and shows first.

In the settings, you can also change the Video Quality of downloaded Netflix content. By default, this is set to Standard as it’s able to download content faster and use less storage. But you can change this setting and select Higher, which will use more storage but improve picture quality. To see the storage chart and adjust video quality:

  • In the Netflix app, open the main menu by tapping the three horizontal lines.

  • Scroll down and tap App Settings.

  • The chart of your iPhone’s data usage will be at the bottom.

  • Tap on Video Quality to switch from Standard to Higher, or vice versa.

Related: How Much Data Does Netflix Use? (& What to Do About It)

How to Download Netflix on Mac or PC 

There isn't an official Netflix app in the Mac App Store, which means there’s no way to download Netflix content for offline viewing like there is on your iOS devices. And while there is a Netflix app for PCs running Windows 10, the app doesn't allow you to easily download Netflix to watch offline. There is no official way, approved by Netflix, to download content on a Mac or PC for offline viewing. Doing so breaks Netflix’s Terms & Conditions, so proceed at your own risk if you decide to do it anyway. Other bloggers have recommended recording your screen as the best way to save Netflix content offline. You can find plenty of apps or software that can record your screen. Of course, you’ll have to play the movie or TV show on Netflix while it records, which is pretty annoying. But you are breaking the rules, so what do you expect. 

Hopefully, Netflix will offer a solution to this in the future; I know a lot of people prefer to travel with their laptop. I’d be happy to download a Netflix app on my Mac if it meant I could save movies and TV shows for offline viewing later. In the meantime, you can watch Netflix online in a browser window (Chrome, Safari, etc.) while we all wait for a Netflix app for Mac.

 

Top Image Credit: Denys Prykhodov / Shutterstock.com

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Conner Carey's picture

Conner Carey's writing can be found at conpoet.com. She is currently writing a book, creating lots of content, and writing poetry via @conpoet on Instagram. She lives in an RV full-time with her mom, Jan and dog, Jodi as they slow-travel around the country.