Disney Plus is launching GroupWatch in the US, allowing up to 7 people to join a viewing party and watch movies and shows together. It's essentially the Disney equivalent of Amazon's Watch Party, with one key difference.
Whereas Watch Party, and other similar apps, let you text chat with each other while the movie or show runs, Apple prefers that your attention stay fixed on the program. Though, unless you're watching on a TV screen, you can use the Disney app to send out emojis for when you find something particularly funny, scary, sad, etc. "We were really focused on making it easy to use for friends and family… and making sure the viewing experience wasn't tarnished," said Disney exec Jerrell Jimerson.
As Variety reports (opens in new tab), the feature was being planned for release before the whole COVID-19 situation, but the pandemic has certainly made GroupWatch more desirable for friends looking to replicate the experience of sitting down and watching a movie together.
GroupWatch is available for every TV show and movie on the Disney Plus streaming service via the icon in the Details section. While TV screen viewers can join in on the party, invites have to be sent out from users on web or mobile. Every party member can rewind or fast forward content for everyone else.
A test version of GroupWatch is already available to subscribers in Canada, Australia, and New Zealand, and Disney has plans to bring the feature to Europe later in the Fall.
Here are all the new Disney Plus movies and shows to watch with your friends in home quarantine.