In a statement from 16 March, Netflix Director of Product Innovation, Chengyi Long, announced the online streaming platform is testing a new policy of charging users who share their account and password with people outside the household.
We’ve always made it easy for people who live together to share their Netflix account, [but this has] created some confusion about when and how Netflix can be shared.Chengyi Long, Netflix Director of Product Innovation
The announcement says that features like separate profiles and multiple streams in the Standard and Premium plans, which allow people who live together to share one single account, although hugely popular, “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.”
So, for the last year, they have been working on ways to enable members who share their accounts with people outside their household to do so easily and securely, while also paying a bit more. Over the next few weeks, the platform will launch and test two new features for members in Chile, Costa Rica and Peru:
- Add an Extra Member: Members on the Standard and Premium plans will be able to add sub accounts for up to two people they do not live with – each with their own profile, personalized recommendations, login and password – at a lower price: 2,380 CLP in Chile, 2.99 USD in Costa Rica and 7.9 PEN in Peru;
- Transfer Profile to a New Account: Members on the Basic, Standard and Premium plans can enable people who share their account to transfer profile information either to a new account or an Extra Member sub account – keeping the viewing history, My List and personalized recommendations.
The changes are not yet guaranteed for all the users of the streaming service, Long saying they will be “working to understand the utility of these two features for members in these three countries before making changes anywhere else in the world.”
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.Chengyi Long, Netflix Director of Product Innovation
Password sharing is prohibited in the terms and conditions of the platform, however, until recently, Netflix has not been keen on implementing this rule. Last year, however, they tested a different way of implementing the ‘same household’ requirement, by displaying the message “If you don’t live with the owner of this account, you need your own account to keep watching” and asking people for a verification code, which was sent to the account owner either via email or text message.