Netflix wants to make the sharing of accounts and passwords outside of a household chargeable in the future.
The company announced that users in more than 100 countries – including Germany and Austria – will have to pay an additional fee from now on if they share their access data with users who are not part of their household. For a person who does not live under the same roof as the paying account holder, 4.99 euros per month will be due. Netflix hopes this will result in higher revenues.
Austria: fee for account sharing is 4.99 euros per month
According to Netflix, users from one household should be able to continue accessing the shared account without any problems while on the road or traveling. The service refers to a “Netflix household” as a collection of devices that access the Internet where people usually watch Netflix. If watching via a T.V., Netflix automatically assigns all devices on the same Internet connection to a household. The shared Internet connection thus seems to be a central feature. Netflix captures I.P. addresses but not GPS data, it said.
In the premium account, which costs 17.99 euros, customers can pay for up to two “extra members. The standard account costs 12.99 euros a month and only allows for one additional space. This is not possible at all with the basic account for 7.99 euros. Another detail: The other account can only be activated in the country of the paying account user.
The U.S. company assumes that the service is used in around 100 million households with the login data of others. Measured against the 232.5 million paying customers in the past quarter, this is a high proportion. Often, for example, children continue to use their parents’ accounts when they move out – or friends share an account to save money. Netflix invests billions every year in video content, some of which is available exclusively on the service.
Impact on Netflix shares
Netflix had long tolerated sharing of access data. In the meantime, however, there is generally an increased focus on profitability in the video streaming business, after years of the many providers chasing higher user numbers. None of the competitors, however, are cracking down on account sharing as consistently as Netflix is now. Netflix shares closed down nearly two percent after the announcement.
Netflix expects that the number of users will initially fall with the action against free riders. In Canada, for example, there are now more paying users and higher revenues than before, the service recently emphasized. This has given the service a sense of vindication. Netflix has not yet commented on developments in other countries. On Tuesday, the start of the approach in the important U.S. market was also announced. There, $7.99 will be charged per extra member.
The crackdown on account sharing had been announced for some time, and Netflix tested it in several countries before the now-announced broad launch. In Europe, it was Portugal and Spain.
- source: k.at/picture: pixabay.com