Netflix to test charging customers for sharing account outside their home

Date:17 March 2022 Author: Micayla Vellai Tags:,

It’s always quite entertaining to sit around the dinner table at family events, and hear how one Netflix account holder complains that they are paying for an account they hardly make use of, while the other three people linked to the account slowly makes their escape writes Popular Mechanics SA’s Micayla Vellai.

Some people refuse to buy gifts for their loved ones during the festive season, “because I’m already paying for them to stream Netflix”, they say. And after the popular streaming service increased their prices, well, let’s just say those who were tagging along for the ride had to cough up and contribute.

The price of the popular Standard plan increased by R20, from R139 to R159 per month while the price of the Premium subscription increased by R30, from R169 to R199 per month.

But now, Netflix has dropped another bomb after announcing that it’s testing to charge a fee to subscribers who share their password and account with people outside of their homes.

“We’ve always made it easy for people who live together to share their Netflix account, with features like separate profiles and multiple streams in our Standard and Premium plans. While these have been hugely popular, they have also created some confusion about when and how Netflix can be shared. As a result, accounts are being shared between households – impacting our ability to invest in great new TV and films for our members,” the streaming service said.

For the last year, Netflix has been working on ways to enable members who share outside of their household to do so easily, while also paying a bit more. Over the next few weeks, they will be launching and testing two new features for members in Chile, Costa Rica, and Peru, and could be rolled out to other countries in the future.

This means that South Africans might have to cough up between R45 and R50 per month considering the current exchange rate, in addition to their current subscription fee.

Netflix outlined the two new features that’ll be tested as follows:

Add an Extra Member: Members on the Standard and Premium plans will be able to add sub accounts for up to two people they don’t live with – each with their own profile, personalised recommendations, login and password – at a lower price (2,380 CLP in Chile, 2.99 USD in Costa Rica, and 7.9 PEN in Peru);

Transfer Profile to a New Account: Members on the Basic, Standard, and Premium plans can enable people who share their account to transfer profile information either to a new account or an Extra Member sub account – keeping the viewing history, My List, and personalised recommendations.

“We recognise that people have many entertainment choices, so we want to ensure any new features are flexible and useful for members, whose subscriptions fund all our great TV and films. We’ll be working to understand the utility of these two features for members in these three countries before making changes anywhere else in the world,” Netflix adds.

Picture: Unsplash

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