After much speculation on the subject, Netflix is trying to supplement its budgets on the backs of those who have made a habit of sharing their usernames with friends and family.
“On paper,” if you have the most expensive subscription, Netflix allows you to share your account with up to three other people so that four screens simultaneously play different movies and series. At the same time, however, the streaming giant points out that, in theory, those screens should be in the same physical space, in the same house. Predictably, too few people comply with this, and Netflix wants to charge extra for those who don’t.
Netflix charges you extra if you share your account
In Canada, New Zealand, Portugal and Spain, Netflix has begun testing account sharing for a fee. If you live, in one of those countries, you’ll have to define your primary residence or location. If you have friends with whom you want to share your account, you will have to subscribe to the Standard or Premium plan and pay an additional fee on top of the subscription fee of $8 in Canada and New Zealand, €4 in Portugal and €6 in Spain. With this money, you earn the right to get two extra users outside your home, your primary location.
You can still use Netflix on your phone or log into your account from a hotel room, for example, but there will be limits. Those who don’t want to pay will be able to, for example, turn a profile on a Netflix account into a separate account. Company officials felt the need to explain that the account-sharing fee is still in development, based on feedback from users, and the spread of the option will continue in more corners of the globe over the next few months.
According to official data, this overcharging effort stemmed from the fact that, globally, more than 100 million people share their accounts and it affects Netflix’s ability to invest in new content. From one point of view, the additional charge is still reflected in a lower price than making separate accounts for everyone, so it might be worth it if you can afford it.