Netflix raised the monthly price of most of its subscription plans in the U.S. and Canada, as the streamer looks to generate more revenue from a slower-growing base customers.
The price increases, announced Friday, will see Netflix’s Standard plan — its most popular tier, which provides two simultaneous HD streams — go up by $1.50, to $15.49 per month.
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In addition, Netflix’s Premium plan (with four streams and offering 4K Ultra HD content) is going up by $2, from $17.99 to $19.99 per month, for U.S. customers. The Basic plan (with a single non-HD stream) is going up $1, to $9.99 monthly.
A notice on Netflix’s customer-support site says the new prices apply to new members and will gradually take effect for all current members. “Current members will receive an email notification 30 days before their price changes, unless they change their plan,” the message says.
The company also increased prices in Canada, where the Standard package increased by $1.50 (CAD), rising to $16.49 (CAD), and the Premium plan went up by $2 (CAD) to $20.99 (CAD)/month. In Canada, the Basic plan remained unchanged at $9.99 (CAD)/month.
“We understand people have more entertainment choices than ever and we’re committed to delivering an even better experience for our members,” a Netflix rep said in a statement, using the same language the last time the streamer raised prices. The spokesperson added, “We’re updating our prices so that we can continue to offer a wide variety of quality entertainment options. As always we offer a range of plans so members can pick a price that works for their budget.”
Netflix’s stock rose more than 3% on news of the price increases, before closing for the day +1.25% to $525.69/share. The stock has dropped 13% over the last month amid investor concern over intensifying competition in the streaming wars.
The hikes are the first for U.S. and Canadian customers since October 2020, and the third increase in the last three years for Netflix’s standard HD plan — which at $15.49/month is now more than the regular HBO Max no-ads tier at $14.99/month. The higher rates come as the company has seen its subscriber growth slow down significantly in its UCAN (U.S. and Canada) region over the past year.
In the third quarter of 2021, Netflix netted just 70,000 streaming subscribers in the U.S. and Canada. For the 12 months ended Sept. 30, it gained about 940,000 in UCAN to stand at 74.0 million (+1.3% year over year) compared with a net add of 18.1 million worldwide (+9.4% YoY).
Netflix is scheduled to report Q4 2021 results next Thursday (Jan. 20) after the market closes.
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