NETFLIX experts have predicted the price of sharing your logins with friends and family.
The streaming giant is due to start charging users who let other people log on to their accounts in just a few weeks.
Netflix said it would enforce the rules “more broadly” by the end of 2023’s first quarter – so fans are bracing for an April crackdown.
The company behind hits such as Stranger Things and The Crown has long-warned that the password sharing loophole was coming to an end.
It’s a swift change from the early days when the firm turned a blind-eye to the money saving trick.
Late last year, industry experts told The Sun how much they think Netflix would charge users.
If people who live outside of your household are logging into your Netflix account, you will pay additional charges from early next year.
Netflix hasn’t confirmed exactly how much this fee will be, but experts say it could be an additional $2/£2 a month per bonus user.
We spoke to industry insider and Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter, who said it could mean a big payday for Netflix.
“My guess is that they will allow up to four accounts per household at the current price,” Michael told The Sun.
“And will charge a modest fee ($2/month) for ‘extra’ accounts.
“I expect them to modify this when a second location logs in (kid away at school) and seek the $2 charge then.”
He added: “There are probably 1 – 2 ‘extra’ accounts that they can capture per subscriber.
“So if 50% of their 220million accounts agrees to pay $2 per month more, that’s $200million a month.”
That would still make it significantly cheaper to share a login than buy your own.
But the burden will fall on the account holder, which could spark a few arguments.
Getting the price exactly right will be extremely important, according to PP Foresight analyst and industry expert Paolo Pescatore.
“Netflix will need to tread carefully,” Paolo told The Sun.
“This has got to be well under a fiver to avoid any user backlash.
“Otherwise it might force some users to downgrade or cancel altogether.”
Cheap as chips
It comes just months after Netflix revealed its cheap new ad-supported subscription plan.
Late last year, the streaming giant announced that the new Basic With Ads tier would cost just $6.99/£4.99 per month.
That’s in contrast to Netflix Basic pricing, which comes in at $9.99/£6.99.
It went live on November 3, and shows adverts between 15 and 30 seconds long before and during series and films.
The new tier, Basic With Ads, launched in 12 countries including Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, the UK and the US.
“Basic with Adverts is everything people love about Netflix, at a lower price, with a few adverts in-between,” Netflix’s Greg Peters said.
The new plan, which Netflix first teased in April, offers most of the features of its Basic plan but with a few small differences.
Customers can stream at HD resolution (720p) on up to one device at a time. Basic is also upgrading to 720p resolution.
An average of four to five minutes of video adverts will play per hour.
Netflix said it will avoid playing the same advert too many times.
A handful of films and TV series won’t be available on the new plan due to licensing restrictions.
There will also be no ability to download movies and series with Basic with Adverts on the app.
Cleaning up your act
Netflix is also offering a route out for account “piggybackers” who share logins.
You can now move your profile off of the account you’ve been sharing.
Users can migrate their profile with all their recommendations and favourites to a different account.
Netflix is positioning Profile Transfer as something needed when people move out or when you break up.
“No matter what’s going on, let your Netflix profile be a constant in a life full of changes so you can sit back, relax and continue watching right from where you left off,” said Timi Kosztin Product Manager in Netflix’s Product Innovation team.
The sharing crackdown is due to begin in earnest very soon.
In an earnings call on Thursday, the firm gave its first indication of when the tougher approach will start to affect more areas.
People will still be able to share an account with those in their household.
But Netflix is targeting those who don’t live in the same house as you.
Some 100million accounts across the globe are thought to be shared beyond the owner’s household.
“Later in Q1, we expect to start rolling out paid sharing more broadly,” the firm said.
“As we roll out paid sharing, members in many countries will also have the option to pay extra if they want to share Netflix with people they don’t live with.”
The company expects some annoyed users will cancel their subscription in response to the move.
As per some of the early test countries already facing a password sharing ban, users are allowed to watch Netflix on a TV outside their home for up to two weeks – this should cover a holiday.
“You can watch Netflix on a TV outside your home for up to 2 weeks as long as your account has not been previously used in that location,” the rules state.
“This is allowed once per location per year.”
Once the two weeks are up, that TV loses access to Netflix until the main account holder pays an additional fee.
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