According to the quarterly report, Netflix intends to restrict or monetize traditional account sharing in the spring of 2023. However, the information is purely speculative because the streaming service does not provide definite intentions.
Each Netflix user can create up to five user accounts, each with personalized suggestions and lists. According to the company, the feature is meant for individuals who live together in one home — but not for family members, friends, or acquaintances who live apart. However, the corresponding sharing is quite common.
In a survey, almost half of the users share a Netflix subscription with friends and family outside their household. So far, those violations have been ignored by Netflix.
One reason for this is the widely criticized gradation of streaming resolution — even by the end of 2022, the cheaper tariffs will not even have Full HD accessible, while customers who wish to watch in UHD will surely have to resort to the costliest subscription for four concurrent users. This, in turn, appears to many consumers to be just too unappealing for a single stream and is commonly seen as the primary cause for extensive sharing.
Paid sharing will start globally in early 2023
According to Netflix’s quarterly report, appropriate limits and paid-sharing offerings will ultimately be pushed out worldwide in the spring of 2023.
However, the statement makes no specific intentions. It is also unclear if the concept will be introduced in stages or will begin simultaneously in all Netflix-supported countries.
Netflix wants to provide customers who have previously unintentionally shared their accounts with two alternatives. First, it will be possible to port individual user profiles into complete user accounts. The playback history and lists are taken over to make the transition to a paid membership as easy as possible. Second, as already tested in South America, it should be possible to let users from other households continue to look at their accounts for an additional fee.
Surprisingly good quarterly figures and better prospects
The figures for the past third quarter of 2022 were a positive surprise for investors. Following two quarters of falling user numbers, Netflix attracted 2.4 million new paying customers from July to September, representing a 4.5% increase year on year. According to Netflix, the success of the series “Stranger Things” and “Dahmer: Monster” are responsible. Netflix also outperformed predictions in terms of sales, increasing by 6% to $7.9 billion US dollars.
Apart from that, a new and cheaper ad-supported subscription will start on November 3, 2022, in selected countries intended to make Netflix accessible to a wider audience. Aside from the 4 to 5 minutes of advertising every hour, another constraint is that a limited amount of films and series will not be accessible due to licencing issues, which Netflix is striving to change.