How to Use Netflix’s Screen Lock to Disable Playback Controls

netflix on phone with popcornPhoto Hall/Shutterstock

Are you tired of watching Netflix on your phone and accidentally pausing, rewinding, or just plain exiting the app? Fret no more, loyal binge-watcher! You can easily lock down your screen while watching Netflix on most mobile devices.

As of this writing, this feature is only available on Android smartphones and tablets. We will update this article if and when the feature goes live on iPhones and iPads.

Once you finish scrolling through Netflix’s seemingly endless catalog of content and find something to watch, the on-screen interface will show the traditional playback controls along with several additional buttons. At any time while you’re watching, tap “Screen Lock” to remove all elements of the Netflix interface except a central button that allows you to unlock the interface.

Netflix Screen Lock Button

This can be useful for watching while you’re on the go, preventing kids from accidentally leaving their favorite show, or holding your phone at an odd angle while watching. The external volume buttons and features on your phone such as Android’s Quick Settings menu will all still work when Screen Lock is enabled.

To unlock the screen at any time, tap anywhere on your screen and then select the “Screen Locked” button. Confirm your choice with a second tap, and then Netflix’s playback controls will display again.

Netflix Screen Unlock Button


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