Netflix hopes to restrict password sharing

A crack down on password sharing could cost Netflix millions of subscribers. Photo courtesy: Netflix

In the era of social media and smartphones, we share everything, whether it be with our friends or family. Playlists, TikTok videos, memes and even the passwords to our streaming apps. We share them all.

But starting next year sharing passwords may come at a cost to many people’s wallets.

According to CBS News, the mega streaming service Netflix will be charging subscribers for every profile or “sub-account” added outside of their household.

The adding of the feature comes after the company saw a decline in subscribers.

Netflix released a press release on its website regarding the testing of the new feature in March. The release says that while Netflix has made password sharing easy for subscribers, it has prevented them from getting more TV shows and films for their members, thus implementing the new “add an extra member” feature.

The feature has been tested in Latin America, specifically Chile, Costa Rica and Peru, where subscribers were charged almost $3 for every account added outside of their home.

Another feature that will be going hand in hand with this is the “profile transfer” feature. This allows you to take your profile off of another person’s account and add it to an existing or new account, all while keeping show progress and watchlists intact.

A 2017 case study shows that 92 percent of college students have access to Netflix, all while using someone else’s account.

Exactly a month before this study concluded, Netflix put out a tweet saying that “Love is addiction” and one following with “Love is sharing a password.”

While the company saw a very slow increase this fall, this new feature being implemented in 2023 could cause another decrease in membership for Netflix.

For those who could be affected by the change set to take place next year, Netflix is now adding a new streaming plan for subscribers.

Starting at the beginning of next month, a basic plan with advertisements will now be available for a price of just $6.99 a month. The plan includes advertisements before and during streaming outside of games and will have a limited selection of shows and movies. Only one device can stream at a time and have video quality of up to 720p.

Current members can switch their subscription if they choose to.

The plan will be available in the United States and 12 other countries, including Australia, Brazil, Canada and France, starting Nov. 3.