Netflix admits ‘consumers are not going to love it’ as they crackdown on password-sharing
The biggest streaming firm is finally ready to crack down on sharing passwords with second households
Adrian WecklerSunday World
Netflix is warning that it will crack down on sharing passwords in 2023.
The world’s biggest streaming company estimates that up to a third of users share their passwords with extended family or friends in other households, which is against its rules.
It has begun trialling an option in South America that allows users who are sharing another household’s account to pay a reduced amount to keep access to the service.
Under this system, anyone who is not present at the IP address of the primary account holder must input a code to keep watching, with a view to migrating consistent non-household watchers onto their own plan.
The main streaming services have been raising their monthly subscription prices sharply over the last two years. Netflix’s 4K family option now coasts €21, while Apple recently raised the price of its Apple TV Plus streaming service from €5 to €7 per month.
The biggest services have mostly turned a blind eye to sharing passwords on accounts up to now, as the sector grew quickly.
However, the main platforms are now seeing new subscription growth slow considerably, with Netflix itself seeing flat figures for the first time last year.
“Make no mistake, I don’t think consumers are going to love it right out of the gate,” Netflix’s joint CEO, Ted Sarandos told investors in early December, as reported by The Wall Street Journal.
Netflix recently introduced a new ad-supported tier to its service at a reduced price, although this is yet to roll out in Ireland.
Netflix’s warning comes as the UK’s Intellectual Property Office warned this week that sharing streaming passwords was illegal under copyright law and could result in prosecution.