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After tackling account sharers, Netflix goes a step further

Netflix has started to phase out the basic subscription, a logical move with costly consequences for you as a consumer. Canada is just the beginning.

Netflix also began targeting account sharers in the Netherlands in May. It is no longer possible to share your password with your colleagues or family members who live elsewhere. They are practically forced to take out their own subscription. A movement that had been coming for years, after many rumors and small-scale tests by the American company.

Netflix goes further

Tests that are carried out in Canada, among others, a country that Netflix often uses as a testing ground for big changes, before its rollout in the United States and the rest of the world. In other words: keeping an eye on Canada says a lot about what Dutch subscribers can expect in the future. An advance that doesn’t make me happy at this point either.

After tackling account sharers, it seems Netflix wants to go a step further to keep shareholders happy. The company has announced in Canada that it will remove the cheapest subscription, the basic level. A subscription that costs $9.99 per month there.

Goodbye basic subscription, hello more billing

The how and why is easy to guess: consumers who want to sign up for a new subscription, say because they can no longer use someone else’s password, now have to choose between a cheap $599 ad-supported subscription, or $16, 49 for the Standard Subscription. Simply put, if you don’t want ads during the movie, the cheapest subscription option for Canadians is the standard plan at $16.49. Phew!

The streaming service quietly made the switch this month. After several Canadian outlets picked up the news, only Netflix officially confirmed the news. Current basic subscribers can continue streaming as usual, but new subscribers are the losers. Although of course they have the option of taking the cheap subscription with advertisements choice, an option that co-CEO Greg Peters says is very popular: a quarter of all new subscribers worldwide opt for that subscription. The remaining three-quarters will have to dig deeper into their pockets from now on.

And what about the Netherlands?

At least in Canada. But if the switch proves profitable, Netflix will no doubt remove the basic subscription in other countries as well. This is not some vague rumor or conspiracy theory: the pattern is clear and the news is concrete. There’s still a chance that the change in strategy will lead to diminishing growth numbers, but the streaming service won’t simply implement the decision.

In the Netherlands, that would mean the €7.99 subscription would disappear, and new subscribers would have to pay €11.99 for the Standard subscription. The big difference with Canada is that the cheapest subscription with ads doesn’t exist with us yet, but that too is only a matter of time.

indirect effect

Don’t forget the indirect effect of unsubscribing Basic: it makes current subscribers think twice before temporarily unsubscribing because, for example, Strange things I’ve already seen Canceling your subscription and coming back later becomes an expensive exercise if you lose your Basic subscription forever. This makes temporarily switching to a competitor even less attractive.

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Winnipeg Free Press

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After tackling account sharers, Netflix goes a step further

Ritika Prasher

Hey! What's going on with TV Shows? I'll tell you. I am a TV show enthusiast that has watched over 500 TV shows and counting. I have the inside scoop on what to watch on Netflix, HBO, Amazon Prime, Hulu and more. Every TV show you want to binge watch, I've seen it. Want to know more about me, send me a mail at : [email protected]
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