By Stuart Thomson
Netflix is to test new plans that allow out-of-household sharing for an extra fee in three Latin American countries.
The streamer will introduce ‘Add an Extra Member’, allowing standard and premium subscribers to add accounts for up to two people they don’t line with, each with their own profile, for a lower price.
In parallel, Netflix will test ‘Transfer Profile to a New Account’, enabling basic, standard and premium members who share their account to transfer profile information to a new account or an ‘extra member’ sub-account while retaining viewing history and personalised recommendations.
The sharing features will initially be introduced in Chile, Costa Rica and Peru. ‘Add an Extra Member’ subscriptions will be available for CLP2,2380, US$2.99 and PEN7.90 in each of these countries respectively.
“We’ve always made it easy for people who live together to share their Netflix account, with features like separate profiles and multiple streams in our Standard and Premium plans. While these have been hugely popular, they have also created some confusion about when and how Netflix can be shared. As a result, accounts are being shared between households – impacting our ability to invest in great new TV and films for our members,” said director of product innovation, Chengyi Long in a blog posting.
“We recognize that people have many entertainment choices, so we want to ensure any new features are flexible and useful for members, whose subscriptions fund all our great TV and films. We’ll be working to understand the utility of these two features for members in these three countries before making changes anywhere else in the world.”
Netflix’s renewed focus on account sharing comes at a time when finding new subscribers to fuel growth is becoming increasingly challenging. However, the sub-account customers signed up under the ‘Add an Extra Member’ feature will not be counted as additional subscribers while still using someone else’s account.
Netflix has previously experimented with moves to tackle password sharing outside of households. Last year it introduced a test feature whereby users identified as password borrowers were asked to verify that they were using their own account by entering a code sent to the actual account holder, or to join with their own account.