Rabbit used to be the most popular and widely-used co-watching service there is, but after a few bumps on the road and some strange decisions that led to the abandonment of and the discontinued support for the platform, a wave of “Rabbit Refugees” has erupted in the search for the next big thing in co-watching experiences.
Rabbit was a free online service that let users watch videos together online. Although it’s a simple concept, Rabbit did it so well that it started a wave of similar services that has since been adopted by numerous online platforms, including Facebook Messenger. The way Rabbit facilitated this new kind of online social experience was through the innovative use of communication technology with synchronized video stream playback to emulate the experience of enjoying content together despite the current social restrictions brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.
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We’re all pretty bummed out to see Rabbit go, but fret not fans and eager Watch Party-goers! Here’s a list of the top co-watching services that are all vying for the throne left behind by Rabbit. Each of them comes with their own unique features and benefits, so make sure you check out the list below to figure out which one is your ideal co-watching service.
- Very popular and widely used
- Robust, fully-featured chat
- Easy to set up and install
- No video or audio support
Formerly known as Netflix Party, Teleparty is likely one of the most popular services out there for watching video content together with friends and family, completely for free. Although it started out as a Netflix-exclusive platform that let users watch Netflix movies, TV shows, and anime with others for free, the service has since grown into something far more versatile.
Now known as Teleparty, this stream watching service now also supports other media streaming entertainment platforms such as Hulu, HBO, and Disney Plus. With 10 million users around the world, Teleparty manages to provide a high-quality, low-latency co-watching experience complete with an integrated chat box that lets you communicate with your co-viewers in real time. Teleparty facilitates discussion and reactions to scenes, and its simple interface and controls make it popular for easy, no frills watching.
All you have to do to get started on Teleparty is head on over to their website (link in the header) and install the Google Chrome extension to start watching your favorite shows and movies with your friends. Keep in mind that your friends are going to need to download and install the extension as well for this to work.
- Fully compatible with endless streaming sites like YouTube, Hulu, and Netflix
- Integrated chat and webcam communication
- No latency performance and synchronized playback
- Stream video from any website
- Lacks audio message capabilities
Twoseven is an app designed to help people communicate and feel like they’re together even when they’re miles apart, particularly as they watch movies, TV shows, and all kinds of video content together. The idea is simple, the execution is great, and the story behind the app is so sweet, too!
Designed and developed by a couple who were forced apart because of the pandemic and the subsequent quarantines, Twoseven was built from the ground up with people and the user experience in mind. Meant to emulate social interactions as much as possible, Twoseven features both group chat and webcam integration to ensure that communication remains fluid and constant, whether you’re having an intimate one-on-one, or spending time with your favorite people.
Twoseven may not be the most feature-rich alternative out there – or maybe not just yet – but its developers are always releasing new updates and features, including growing support for more and more video content providers and streaming entertainment services like Netflix, Apple TV, Vimeo, Crunchyroll, Hulu, HBO Max, Amazon Prime, and more. Twoseven even lets you play, stream, and sync local video files, screenshare, and more.
- Arguably the most powerful Rabbit alternative
- Can host online watch parties of up to 50 people
- Integrated chat and control sharing
- Constant developer updates and new features added
- Still a work in progress
- Needs some polish in its layout and interface
Invited may not be the most feature-rich Rabbit alternativ out there – it definitely needs a little polish here and some quality of life improvements there – but in terms but raw power, stability, and performance, Invited is a co-watching service that’s tough to beat.
While other co-watching services put a premium on intimacy and the emulation of social experiences, Invited focuses on the emulation of mass gatherings, allowing for watch parties of up to 50 people. Although it’s a fairly capable co-watching service for small gatherings as well, not many among the competition – if any among them – can stably accommodate a watch party that size. Invited also offers integrate group chat to keep communications open through the entire event, and control sharing so that watch parties can become collaborative experiences.
Another reason to love Invited over other Rabbit alternatives is that it’s constantly being updated and new features are always being added. If support continues for this unique and powerful new entrant to the co-watching service scene, Invited is bound to make big waves. After all, it already has a solid technical foundation – few other services of its kind can boast simultaneous watch parties of up to 50 people, an Invited manages that without even breaking a sweat, as long as your internet bandwidth is up to scruff.
- No download or installation needed
- Friends and family can join with the click of a button
- Full voice and video integration
- Can watch videos and play games together
- Clunky on mobile devices
Feature-rich, powerful, and oh so smooth, Kosmi is one of the newest additions to the co-watching scene, and is rapidly gaining fame and acclaim for its incredible ease of use and hassle-free interactions.
One of the best things about Kosmi is that it’s one of the easiest co-watching services to get into. With a single click or page visit, you’re in. No frills, no signups, no downloads, installations, or extensions, no nothing. It’s that easy.
To get into Kosmi, all you have to do is launch the app using your favorite web browser and you’re in – you can start watching videos with your friends and family right off the bat. Create a room or join one, or get on the Public Chat channel and make some friends!
Of course, to get the most out of the Kosmi experience, we highly recommend signing up and making your own account. That way, you can keep track of your friends and other people you meet on the Kosmi platform, plus it unlocks an entirely new social layer to the co-watching experience.
Apart from the absolute hassle-free usage of Kosmi, it’s also one of the most feature-rich platforms out there. You can watch videos and play games together using Kosmi, and with full voice and video integration, you can communicate with your mates in the way that you’re most comfortable with, or the way that helps you express your unique spark most effectively.
Kosmi is entirely free to use – no commitments required and not an ad in sight – but if you want to support the developer you can always buy him a coffee by clicking the button on the Kosmi homepage.
- Real-time, zero latency streaming
- Integrated chat box
- Effortlessly transition between watching together and playing together
- Primarily a gaming platform
- Video streaming features not as robust as others
Parsec first launched as a game streaming platform designed to compete head to head with the game streaming giant Twitch TV. Although it had some unique features that put it a cut above the Twitch TV, it never caught on as a direct competitor.
However, Parsec is catching on now more than ever as an alternative way to watch videos with friends online. It has several interactive features that makes it an excellent co-watching service, including real-time commenting that doubles as a group chat box. With synced playback one-directional control, Parsec may not be the most interactive co-watching experience – especially for everyone other than the watch party host – but that just makes it easier to turn every watch party into a play party and vice versa.
- Ideal for use on smartphones and other mobile devices
- Fully compatible with VR devices like daydream and Gear VR
- Synchronized video and music playback
- No desktop app
- No browser extension
If you’re looking for a Rabb.it alternative that’s built from the ground up to work flawlessly with mobile devices, look no further than Rave.
Rave is one of the few co-watching services that gives you an unfettered mobile experience. With dedicated apps for Android and iOS, Rave is the go-to app when you prefer to watch videos on your mobile rather than your PC.
If you’re into the futuristic experience that is VR – either with daydream-ready mobile devices or those compatible with Gear VR – then Rave is likely the top choice if you want maximum compatibility and exclusive features that help you unlock the potential of VR technology in entertainment.