After making tv series for the adult audiences, Netflix is planning to launch a new feature for children that lets them earn “patches” for watching/streaming episodes of certain shows. The new feature gamifies the streaming experience for kids and help them to earn incentives by watching particular shows that Netflix has picked out. Selected shows are marked with red locks so that users can easily identify the series included in the test. Netflix has only chosen films and TV shows that are all Netflix Originals, including Trollhunters, A Series of Unfortunate Events, Home, and The Magic School Bus Rides Again. You can’t actually do anything with the patches once you’ve earned them.
Some researchers have found out that the gamification can lead to increased engagement with content, it might not have long-term benefits. Researchers from the University of South Australia and Université Toulouse in France stated that “The positive effect of gamification on engagement appeared to lessen over time. This result is not surprising, given that extrinsic rewards such as badges and points tend to wear off after a short period of novelty.”
While talking to the Verge, Netflix mentioned that “We are testing a new feature on select kids titles that introduces collectible items for a more interactive experience, adding an element of fun and providing kids something to talk about and share around the titles they love.” It further added that “although it was testing out this feature, patches weren’t guaranteed to be a permanent addition, we learn by testing and this feature may or may not become part of the Netflix experience.”