App

This app lets you watch stuff simultaneously with others

Price: Free
Version: 4.6.1
Size: 161 MB
Platform: iPhone/iPad
Developer: Rave Media

Rave

At the time of writing a lot of people around the world are on lockdown as we attempt to curb the current COVID-19 pandemic. And while I could watch another episode of Love is Blind with my partner while continuing to question which one of the contestants is in fact blind, I think they’ve had enough of my hot takes for the next few weeks.

It’s easy to jump in – just join an active watching group from the homepage

That’s, almost exactly, where Rave comes in. Rave allows you to watch and interact with a vast amount of content, from Netflix films and series, to Reddit subreddits, to YouTube videos and more. By interaction, we mean you can watch the content on your device while simultaneously chatting to others from across the globe that have also chosen to watch that piece of content.

You can get into random nostalgia holes. Clips from random British soap operas? Sure

Popular live streams are listed on the Rave homepage, where you can join with a bunch of randoms. However, we found ourselves with some rather unsavory drop-ins making nefarious use of their mic capabilities. We’ll leave you to figure that one out.

The app works in different orientations, but always keeps you looped into the chat

But no problem – Rave lets you start your own watching parties. Pick your favorite film or TV episode and invite contacts from your Contacts app, or on Facebook, or those that have the app as well, or even those you’ve previously interacted with via Rave, to join you and discuss the latest Drake video. You know, if that’s your thing.

See where your fellow Ravers are based

Thankfully, you can also start private watching parties with only those you know. So, settle in, shut the curtains, pretend the world isn’t burning and experience a good old-fashioned movie night.

Or start your own Rave. Let’s relax and find out how to make some keto buffalo wings.

So that’s the basics. Does it work well? It sure does. The app finds a way to ensure everything’s easily accessible no matter what orientation your device is in, or whether you’re focusing on the chat or the content. You can even view a map of what other Ravers are in the world are watching at that point in time, and the app will still show a tiny circular window in the bottom left so you can tap back in when you’re ready.

Naturally, the scope is huge. And even if you just want to watch something but you might want to interact later, why not start a rave with the TV show you fancy watching and just wait and see if anyone drops in. It’s all good fun.

The only thing we found a little frustrating was being able to find something by category or genre. Instead, you just have to scroll the homepage until you find something, and invariably you end up dropping in halfway through. Something that filters by videos that are just starting, or the ability to signal the start of something in 10 minutes would be great. However, the experience when you start your own pre-planned party and invite VIPs only is much better.

It’s also great to see an app like this cater for ready-made friendship groups and those that may not feel like they have someone to call on right now.

So, why not give it a go? Who concentrates on anything anymore anyway.