It’s more fun to watch together

Here are a few applications that allow you to get together virtually in front of the same screen to watch a movie or a series together, to listen to music together, even when far apart, and have the capability to share your thoughts at the same time via chat. Of course, you can always try and share a video through Zoom or another web conference platform that allows you to share your screen. Some applications, however, are specially developed to watch or listen together. Scener is a Chrome extension that also allows you to share Netflix, Vimeo, and other major streaming services in addition to YouTube, it also has a nice video chat option, so that you see each other while watching your favorite movies or series – if you want that. One important prerequisite is that, of course, you need to have an account on the streaming service you are sharing. (Free Chrome extension available here. )

Syncplay is a nice open source tool with a different approach: each user must have their own copy of the media to be played. Each Syncplay Client launches a media player, connects to a Syncplay server, and joins a virtual room on that server. Pause and play and seeks by anyone of the viewers will then be replicated by the media players of everyone else in the same virtual room so that all participants stay in sync. (Free from here) Another one is WatchTogether, where you can create free rooms, with ads in the free version. WatchTogether is browser based, no installation required. While watching, you can interact with each other via text and even video chat (up to 10 simultaneous users can use their web cam). In virtual classes this can replace the video projector in front of the classroom, the teacher can play and pause videos, ask questions, all live while all students are watching the same video. (Free with adds here)