Netflix Reveals Password Sharing Plans; Will Roll Out in Early 2023
For most of 2022, Netflix has been looking for ways to combat password sharing as the streamer reports that 100 million people around the world use an account owned by someone that they don’t live with. In the spring, the streaming giant began rolling out tests in Chile, Costa Rica, and Peru in order to figure out how to best increase the company’s revenue without alienating users who clearly want to use the product.
Though there were some obvious bumps in the road, Netflix said on Tuesday that it was ready to move forward with a larger expansion of its plans to curb the password-sharing practice. As part of its third-quarter earnings report, which included the announcement that the streamer added 2.41 million customers in Q3 — Netflix said that it would begin increasing its efforts early next year.
“Finally, we’ve landed on a thoughtful approach to monetize account sharing and we’ll begin rolling this
out more broadly starting in early 2023,” the company said in a letter to shareholders. “After listening to consumer feedback, we are going to offer the ability for borrowers to transfer their Netflix profile into their own account, and for sharers to manage their devices more easily and to create sub-accounts (‘extra member’), if they want to pay for family or friends. In countries with our lower-priced ad-supported plan, we expect the profile transfer option for borrowers to be especially popular.”
While Netflix did not immediately explain what its more “thoughtful” plan would entail, last month, the world’s largest streaming service launched a new version of its tests that shifted the focus and responsibility from where it had originally been. In the earlier experiments, Netflix showed a message to account owners giving them the ability to add users outside of the home for approximately $2.99 USD.
However, in the most recent round, it was the non-paying users in Argentina, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and the Dominican Republic were shown the message. They were first logged out of the main account and, when they signed back in, were prompted to create and pay for a sub-account. The rate was still $2.99 USD for these countries, except for Argentina, where users were charged $1.50.
The country is Netflix’s fourth-largest user base — behind only the United States, Canada, and Australia — but the median monthly income in the country is $250 USD, and the government charges exorbitant taxes for foreign transactions, including Netflix.
Based on Netflix’s statement to shareholders, it sounds like the company might be combining the two options and giving both account “borrowers” and owners the ability to bring everyone into good standing with the streamer. As the year progresses and the debut of these new efforts approaches, undoubtedly Netflix will reveal more details including price, launch dates, and functional processes.
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