Sunday, 28 May 2023

Netflix begins UK password crackdown with email reminder to account sharers

Netflix’s crackdown on password sharing has hit the UK as the streaming giant begins measures to weed out the practice.

So, If you’re sharing an account with someone outside your household, you’ll need to either kick them out or pay an extra £4.99.

On Tuesday, the company said it was sending out emails alerting users that their accounts cannot be shared for free outside of their households.

Customers in 103 other countries including the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Australia, Singapore, Mexico and Brazil would also be receiving the emails.

‘A Netflix account is for use by one household. Everyone living in that household can use Netflix wherever they are – at home, on the go, on holiday,’ said Netflix in the email.

Paying customers can add a member outside of their homes for an additional fee. In the UK, the fee is £4.99 a month, while US users will have to pay $8 a month.

Under the new policies, people within the same household can continue sharing a Netflix account and can use it on various devices when travelling, the company said.

Members can also transfer a person’s profile so the user can keep their viewing history and recommendations.

The change has been in the works since last year when Netflix said it was going to limit account sharing and was testing various approaches to enforce it in some countries like Canada, New Zealand, Portugal and Spain.

The company had estimated that more than 100million households had shared their log-in credentials with friends and family outside their homes. As of the end of March, Netflix’s paying customers totalled 232.5million globally.

As Netflix grapples with plunging subscriber numbers in the UK due to the cost of living crisis, it remains to be seen if users would be willing to pay the extra cost.

The company continues to look for new ways to make money as it faces signs of market saturation, with efforts including limits on password sharing and a new ad-supported option.

Last year, the streamer increased the price of its basic and standard plan by £1 a month to £6.99 and £10.99 respectively, while the premium tier went up by £2 to £15.99.

In November, a cheaper Netflix subscription tier with adverts arrived in the UK for £4.99 per month.

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