Navigation Guide for the Netflix iOS App


This guide may no longer be accurate or up-to-date for most users and use cases. We're keeping it online as a courtesy to its author, but we consider it archived.
Ok how to navigate netflix using voiceover. This is useful for anyone who has gotten frustrated trying to use netflix. Or if you know a blind person who uses the iphone and has tried netflix but got frustrated with it as well. I want to thank those who gave me the hints to figure this out from the netflix app discussion here on applevis. This is just how I found to do it. And it works reliably so I thought I would share it to help others. The posts under the netflix weren't very clear for me. So I hope this helps those who were as confused as I was. If it doesn't I apologize for wasting your time if I did. This was tested using the latest version of netflix and on an iphone 3gs As that is the only model I have. You do not have to turn off voiceover at all. When in a list of movies under a heading or really whereever you are on the screen. To move forward two or three movies. Simply double tap with one finger and hold for like a second or two on the right side of the screen and drag your finger across the screen to the left. This brings up the next two or three movies/tv listings. To see the previous movie listings simply double tap with one finger and hold on the left side of the screen and drag your finger across the screen to the right. To see the next screen of netflix. Double tap and hold one finger at the bottom of the screen then drag to the top of the screen. To see the previous screen on netflix. Double tap with one finger on the top of the screen and drag down your finger to the bottom of the screen. Of course you lift each finger when you finish dragging it. To navigate each screen dragging your finger across the screen seem to be better than flicking it as you know what is actually on the screen. When you see an item on the screen that you want and you get to it simply double tap. If it is something with episodes it will open a new screen and you can navigate this screen with the up and down screen options I listed above. When you on an episdoe you want more info about simply double tap the name of that episode. Navigate back up the screen to where the description is and it will show you the description for that episode. If you want to play an episode oout of the line that netflix does play episode after episode. Let's say netflix is on ep 6 and you want to watch ep 9. Simply move down the screens until the ep you want is shown. And find the play button and double tap it. Netflix will reorient itself to that episode I think if I recall correctly. now for the player screen. When a video is playing. the Screen will switch the play pause and rewind options off. To have them redisplay simply double tap with one finger on the screen. The phone will be in landscape mode at this point. When the items are showing you can simply find the option you want at the bottom of the landscape screen and double tap it. I find split tapping seems to work in some cases. The two items at the top of the screen when these options are showing is done and languages. languages seems to have to deal with close captiioning and uaudio. The items on the bottom of the screen from left to right are rewind play/pause a scrubber selection thign that i can't figure out how to use. And something that says remaining. That really is all there is too it. I sure hope this helps someone. done of course stops a video. I think netflix makes items move across or up and down the screen as you wish. It is a strange way of doing it. But now that I know how I actually like the app. And I hope this helps some of you who may still be stuck as I was. As for how netflix does things. As I stated above. Dragging your finger all the way one direction will move the display to what direction you wish to move it. But it seems you don't have to drag all the way up or down or right or left. You can also go half way or a quarter of the way. the items will still move. Interesting concept. but if you drag all the way you get a lot more new info on the screen. If you only drag a little of the way new items show but not as many.


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Submitted by Lisa on Saturday, September 22, 2012

Thanks for writing this. I am a netflix user, and have been limited to whatever is on the first screen. I'll have to give your method a try, and see how it goes.

Submitted by Daniel on Saturday, September 22, 2012

In reply to by Lisa

You don't need to turn voiceover off, and all that stuff. Using the standard scrolling gestures works wonderfully.

Submitted by Lisa on Saturday, September 22, 2012

I'm guessing I'm doing something wrong, but it's not working too well for me. I can sometimes get the screen to move, but I think the layout of this app is really odd. I can't use the headings in the roter to go from heading to heading, because voiceover doesn't seem to focus on anything unless I drag. So, I'm still having trouble navigating my instant cue. It's too bad the VO three-finger swipe doesn't work, and I wish voiceover would stay focussed when I flick right or left.

Submitted by AnonyMouse on Sunday, September 23, 2012

Thank you ever so much for writing this guide up for us! It is a shame that the Netflix itself is not as friendly as we want it to be. It doesn't follow the traditional standard that we take for granted. It does force you to not use the standard flicking away from us. You have to use your finger to navigate around the screen to make this work. Your suggestions is spot on. Ther is a bit of a learning to make this work consistantly. Great job!

Submitted by BlindWiz on Sunday, September 23, 2012

Yes, Thank you for the guide. A question though, how do I get to my instant queue? and how do I add things to my instant queue? Ok, I guess that's two.

Submitted by Yiskalyn on Sunday, September 23, 2012

First I want to thank everyone who encouraged me for this guide. Second. I want to comment on Daniel's comment. Not criticizing you but if your three finger swipe up and down works I wish to know what ios version your using and which iphone. Flick right and left work but they don't update the screen. I am not the only one who has these problems thus is why I wrote this guide. A lot of people have trouble with netflix with voiceover. I got it to work and shared what I found. And I said also one does not have to turn voiceover off. Now to answer the few questions that came up. And to make one more observation. I don't mind people adding ideas by the way. Just make sure you read the guide in its entirety before adding ideas. It will save a lot of confusion in the long run. Lisa. Maybe I wasn't totally clear I have trouble with communicating sometimes. You must drag your finger. Flicking left and right works but it won't update the screen. If you know how to delete and move apps on your home screens you have the command down. This is what I show in my guide. Can you try rereading the guide again? Sorry it isn't working for you. And please understand netflix is crazy. You may be doing something wrong but don't fault yourself. Netflix doesn't make it easy to learn. Quick overcap. To go up a screen double tap and hold with one finger at the bottom of the screen and drag your finger up the screen. To go back a screen same double tap with one finger hold but this time at the top of the screen this time and drag your finger down the screen. To display the next three movies on a line of movies listed double tap and hold one finger at the right of the screen and drag your finger across the screen to the left. To display the previous three movies in the list of movies you have focused on. Double tap one finger on the left side of the screen holding it then dragging it to the right side of the screen. You only need to hold your finger on the screen for like a second or two before dragging it across the screen. Your finger must stay on the screen for dragging.. Youc an flick right and left and this will read everything to you but it won't update the screen. Before moving the movies forward or backward you need to have that set of the movies on the screen and find it by dragging your finger to it without double tapping. If you have more trouble maybe I can arrange a phone call with you to help you. I wouldn't mind if you wouldn't mind. I like to help people. And sometimes one on one can fix misunderstandings. Again don't worry. It isn't easy to learn like someone else said. But once learned it really makes netflix a lot easier to handle. to move by heading be near the top of the screen make sure headings is selected in the rotator and then simply swipe your finger down to go to next heading or previous heading swipe up with you finger. But dragging really is the best way. But you have to drag slowly up and down the screen along the left side to find the headings. They seem a bit small. If you want to find a movie suggestion netflix has selected for you but you don'tor can't seem to get things to work right searching for it works the search button is at the top right of the screen. When you search for the item your looking for it will bring it up and you can easily double tap it. I have come into the problem of when moving the movie list under a particular heading right or lefft on the screen sometimes double tapping the new movie that shows on the screen doesn't bring it up. So if this happens I make sure I have the movie title set right and then spell it character by character by changing the rotator setting to character and then go to search and type it in. To the person asking about the instant queue. The instant queue now is at the bottom of the first screen of info. There is a heading called instant queue and this is where your instant queue is if you have items in it. So when you open netflix. Wait till everything loads up. Touch near the bottom of the screen and your instant queue should be there. Same gestures as before to move the movies right or left. Make sure you finger is at the right of the screen on the last movie showing in your queue. Double tap and hold and drag your finger to the left. It will bring up your next movies in your instant queue if you have more than three in there. Again this is with the latest version of netflix. To add a tv show to your queue. When you double tap a tv show near the top of the screen it will have close on the upper right. play on the left and instant queue on the right next to play. If you know an item is not in your instant queue simply double tap your instant queue to add it . If you know it is in your instant queue and wish to remove it simply double tap instant queue and it will remove it. I have never done a podcast in my life and I don't know how. If someone is willing to teach me or help me find the resources so I can do one I wouldn't mind doing a podcast to demonstrate these. It may help to make the learning process easier. Or if someone else knows what I am talking about exactly and knows how to do it and how to describe it it may also help. If your not using the latest version of netflix released just a few days ago. You should upgrade before trying this. In the upper left corner of the screen there is an unllabelled button. If you double tap this it brings up a bunch of categories. Like tv shows and then different genre categories. To select one of the genres simply find it once selected double tap it. Again I don't mind if people try to help by posting a better communicated version of this guide or record a podcast or teach me how to record a podcast so I can better demonstrate this. or maybe someone else can do so. Has anyone ever recorded their podcasts with a braille note apex? Just curious.

Submitted by Yiskalyn on Sunday, September 23, 2012

Just wanted to update. with this new version of netflix whether you click on a tv show or movie You will still be taken to the info screen. This is nice. It used to not be this way. I also noticed that it seems when your dragging movies right or left that double tapping on movies in the middle of the screen seems to work better than double tapping on the right or left of the screen. Also when moving around the screen with the dragging options I mentioend for up down right and left don't double tap right at the edge of the screen. You want to be close to the edge. but you don't have to be right on the edge. Hope this makes sense.

Hello, This is a nice guide. Your words are well written. I was able to understand them, but netflix just has issues with my phone for some reason. I have no problems moving around the screen, but I have a large instant cue of about 10 or more movies. I'm stuck having to only play 3 out of whatever I have, which makes it complicating. When I first got the netflix app, it was mainly accessible. In fact, that was what made me subscribe to the service. Now, they've updated their app to the point that it makes me almost wish I didn't have it. I really love the fact that a lot of me and my husband's documentaries are up there for us to watch, but all we really wanted was the ability to access the instant cue. We're not really movie people. We just would add stuff to our instant cue and whenever we wanted to watch something just load the app. My husband doesn't use an IPhone because he has CP and wishes not to use a touch screen. When I found out he was able to some-what navigate netflix on the laptop computer, I decided to keep the service. While I'm away at the gym or doing something, he can still watch his documentaries and not have to depend on my phone to listen and for me to load up each episode. He still has trouble adding things to the cue, so I do that at my end, but basically I have the service mainly for him now. I really hope I don't sound like I'm complaining, but I'm extremely disappointed with the app. I really could care less for all the popular garbage they have to load on our phones. I want my instant cue back, none of this movie crud. Sorry if it seems like I'm upset, but I really feel if we're going to use the service, especially on something that is portable, it should be simple and hastle-free, especially when we're paying a monthly subscription to use the service. If the popular stuff was removed, and my instant cue returns, I wouldn't mind the app at all, but for now, I have to search for shows I know exist, even when they're on my instant cue in order to just watch them. I can tell you guys now, flicking around the screen does not work very well. I just tap on the screen and find what it is you're looking for. I've found the instant cue, but like I said before, only 3 items are showing. Again, you did a really nice job on the guide. I'd like to maybe chat with you sometime. As you may or may not know, I've submitted a couple of podcasts to the site. Perhaps we can work together on producing something that can be put up here, and share ideas of how to make this netflix app a bit more useable again. I always believe there can be a positive outcome, a good solution to any problem. The important thing is that we work as a team, even if it means we have to keep sending emails to netflix and help them become aware of the situation facing voice over users who simply just want to watch their favorite things on the IPhone. They is always room for improvement, and a positive attitude and an open mind will help us through this. Take care, everyone. If you have any questions, contact me. If we can figure this app out, maybe a podcast can be aranged, but for now, try to work with the suggestions provided by the author of this guide. It will have to suffice until netflix makes some changes. Again, thank you for posting this guide. Melissa Roe

I'm using an iPhone 4S, with iOS 6, and the latest version of netflix. Once you tap on a title in your instant queue, the 3 finger swipe up and down works perfectly. You can even choose which season of a tv show you'd like to watch. This app is more accessible than people give it credit for.

Submitted by blindgator on Saturday, September 29, 2012

In reply to by Lisa

I have been using the Netflix app for years, and been turning the VO off and on to scroll down the page. Thanks so much for this guide, as I just tested it out and it works much better than toggling VO off and on. Still have trouble finding my queue but normally just use the search field to find what I want as I primarily just watch old tv shows as their movie catalog is lacking to say the least. Has anyone found a title that has audio description yyet? I noticed the new audio setting under languages but of course have yet to find anything with audio description. I think once again the blind get screwed and this audio listing under languages really just means close captioning. The funny thing is I recall a few updates ago Netflix mentioned Voiceover enhancements and of course I didn't notice any updates to VO