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Streaming giant Netflix is planning to introduce adverts and extra charges for sharing passwords.
The introduction of adverts will allow consumers the ‘choice’ of having a lower subscription rate whilst there will still be package options without adverts.
During a quarterly earnings call with investors, CEO Reed Hastings explained that while he had been ‘against the complexity of advertising, and a big fan of the simplicity of subscription’ he is a ‘bigger fan of consumer choice and allowing consumers who would like to have a lower price, and are advertising-tolerant, get what they want.
There is currently no advertising on the service, this is due to the monthly pricing structure allowing consumers to transition seamlessly between episodes of their favourite shows. However, the introduction of an ads-based model may be to encourage more users to stay on the platform.
Alongside the introduction of ads-based subscriptions, Netflix will soon be charging you for sharing your password with other family members. Last month it was revealed that the streaming service was already trialling these additional charges in Chile, Costa Rica, and Peru. Those found to be password sharing were charged around another £2 on top of their subscription fee. During its quarterly earnings call, Netflix said they would be expanding these to other countries including the US from next year.
it is currently unclear how they will detect those sharing passwords with people outside of their households.
The plans come as a way to help Netflix continue to invest in new big-budget shows and movies, but the announcement has left some consumers unhappy especially following a price hike earlier this year. The rise in living costs, as well as increased competition from streaming services like Amazon Prime and Disney+, are taking a toll on company finances. According to the Wall Street Journal, Netflix lost 200,000 global subscribers in the first quarter of 2022. They expect to lose 2 million more this spring resulting in shares in the company falling by 17%.
If you don’t want to pay for streaming services, there are plenty of ways to access TV for free.