Category Archives: Netflix

Netflix Announces It Will Charge An “Extra Home” Fee



Netflix announced it has been “carefully exploring” different ways for people who want to share their account to pay a bit more. In March, they added an “add extra member” feature in Chile, Costa Rico, and Peru. From next month, Netflix will launch an alternative “add a home” feature in Argentina, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.

Here’s how this “add a home” feature will work:

One home per account: Each Netflix account – whatever your plan – will include one home where you can enjoy Netflix on any of your devices.

Buy additional homes: To use your Netflix account in additional homes, we will ask you to pay an extra [219 Pesos per month per home in Argentina / $2.99 per month per home in the Dominican Republic / $2.99 per month per home in Honduras / $2.99 per month per home in El Salvador / $2.99 per month per home in Guatemala]. Members on the Basic plan can add one extra home, Standard up to two extra, and Premium up to three extra.

Travel Included: You can watch while outside the home on your tablet, laptop, or mobile.

New Manage Homes Feature: You will soon be able to control where your account is being used – and remove homes at any time – from your account settings page.

The Verge describes the “extra home” fee as “Netflix’s latest anti-password sharing test”. In March of 2022, Netflix very specifically described that Members on the Standard and Premium plans will be able to add sub accounts for up to two people they don’t live with – each with their own profile, personalized recommendations, login and password.

The Verge also reported what Netflix’s support page says about Adding an extra home:

“Beginning August 22, 2022, when you sign into Netflix on a TV outside of your home, you will see the option to add the extra home for an additional fee per month.

“If you will only be using this TV for a limited time, you can watch Netflix for up to 2 weeks at no extra charge as long as your account has not been previously used in that location. After that time, the TV will be blocked unless you add the extra home.”

In addition, Netflix explains how it detects homes:

“We use information such as IP addresses, device IDs, and account activity.

“If you are using a device within your included home and still see a message that says that there are too many homes using your account, you can:

“Make sure that the device is connected to the same internet connection as the other devices in the home.

“Make sure that the device is not connected to a VPN, proxy, or any unblocked service.”

GameSpot reported that Netflix’s share price dropped almost 70% this year as a result. The company said that password sharing has been particularly high in Latin America, hence testing these initiatives there first.

In my opinion, if Netflix feels that these measures work well in the countries that Netflix has selected, it might try and impose those same restrictions in other countries as well. I wouldn’t be surprised if Netflix users in the US get the “extra home” charge imposed upon them eventually.


Microsoft and Netflix Partner For New Ad-Supported Tier



Microsoft posted on the Official Microsoft Blog a post titled: “Netflix names Microsoft as partner for new consumer subscription plan”. Part of it says:

We’re thrilled to be named Netflix’s technology and sales partner to help power their first ad-supported subscription offering.

At launch, consumers will have more options to access Netflix’s award-winning content. Marketers looking to Microsoft for their advertising needs will have access to the Netflix audience and premium connected TV inventory. All ads served on Netflix will be exclusively through the Microsoft platform. Today’s announcement also endorses Microsoft’s approach to privacy, which is built on protecting customer’s information.

This is a big day for Netflix and Microsoft. We’re excited to offer new premium value to our ecosystem of marketers and partners while helping Netflix deliver more choice to their customers…

Netflix posted on their About Netflix website a post titled: “Netflix to partner with Microsoft on new ad supported subscription plan”. It was written by Chief Operating Officer and Chief Product Officer of Netflix, Greg Peters. Part of the post says:

In April, we announce that we will introduce a new lower priced ad-supported subscription plan for consumers, in addition to our existing ads-free basic, standard and premium plans. Today we are pleased to announce that we have selected Microsoft as our global advertising technology and sales partner.

Microsoft has the proven ability to support all our advertising needs as we work together to build a new ad-supported offering. More importantly, Microsoft offered the flexibility to innovate over time on both the technology and sales side, as well as strong privacy protections for our members…

The Verge reported that Microsoft will become Netflix’s “global advertising technology and sales partner” upon rolling out the cheaper option. (This is, of course, referring to the “ad-supported” option.)

According to The Verge, Netflix’s decision to choose Microsoft: recalls a close relationship between the two for streaming launches. The first version of Watch Instantly that streamed mostly B-movies used Microsoft’s Silverlight technology to deliver video instead of the more common Flash Player until it was replaced by HTML5, and the Xbox 360 was the first console with an HD Netflix streaming app.

How well will the “ad-supported” subscription plan go over with customers? That remains to be seen. It is possible that people who want to watch things on Netflix, but who don’t have a lot of money to spend on subscription services, might give it a try.

On the other hand, Netflix and Microsoft could potentially stuff way too many ads into the “ad-supported” plan. Doing so would be a big mistake, especially if ads pop up in Netflix’s TV shows or movies, entirely breaking the immersion that people want to feel while being entertained.


Netflix Lays Off Estimated 150 Staffers



Netflix is laying off approximately 150 employees across the company, according to an internal memo sent Tuesday and obtained by The Hollywood Reporter. This round of layoffs follows at least 10 full-time staff and contractors working under the editorial division on April 28, 2022. Those workers were part of Tudum Studio, which Netflix launched in December of 2021.

NPR reported that layoffs of employees and contractors for the Netflix site Tudum made waves online. People criticized the company for letting go of staff who had been recently recruited and for the lack of internal marketing of their work.

According to NPR, these layoffs are reflective of a change that Netflix is undergoing. In the wake of controversial programming on its platform, the tech giant recently altered its corporate culture memo to say employees may have to work on projects they find harmful.

Los Angeles Times reported that a spokesperson for Netflix provided the following statement:

“As we explained on earnings, our slowing revenue growth means we are also having to slow our cost growth as a company. So sadly, we are letting around 150 employees go today, mostly U.S.-based. These changes are primarily driven by business needs rather than individual performance, which makes them especially tough as none of us want to say goodbye to such great colleagues. We’re working hard to support them through this very difficult transition.”

According to the Los Angeles Times, a contractor who was part of a team that ran social media content promoting LGBTQ storytelling said, “This felt more of a matter of when, than if.” The contractor, who was not allowed to speak publicly, first became aware of the layoffs through the news, and hours later attended an all-hands on meeting where a group of people were informed they were losing their jobs.

Animation Magazine reported that Netflix was also eliminating two percent of roles from its animation workforce, largely in the U.S. According to Animation Magazine, at the beginning of the month, a trio of animated Netflix Kids & Family projects were nixed from the slate: Jeff King’s Dino Daycare (part of kids’ animation whiz Chris Nee’s initial slate with the streamer), Meghan Markle’s Pearl and Jaydeep Hasrajani’s Boons and Curses.

All of this comes after Netflix cracked down on account sharing (with someone outside of your household).

The Hollywood Reporter stated that in April, during its first-quarter earnings announcement, Netflix revealed it had lost 200,000 subscribers in the quarter and expected to lose an additional 2 million during the second quarter.


Netflix Is Having Financial Problems



Netflix reported a loss of 200,000 subscribers during the first quarter – its first decline in paid users in more than a decade – and warned of deepening trouble ahead, CNBC reported. According to CNBC, Netflix’s shares cratered more than 25% in extended hours after the report on more than full day’s worth of trading volume. Fellow streaming Roku, Spotify, and Disney also tumbled in the after-hours market after Netflix’s brutal update.

Netflix recently provided information to its shareholders. Here are some key points:

Netflix stated: “In the near term, though, we’re not growing revenue as fast as we’d like. COVID clouded the picture by significantly increasing our growth in 2020, leading us to believe that most of our slowing growth in 2021 was due to the COVID pull forward. Now, we believe there are four main inter-related factors at work”.

Those factors are:

  • The pace of growth into our underlying addressable market (broadband homes) is partly dependent on factors we don’t directly control, like the uptake of connected TVs (since the majority of our viewing is on TVs), the adoption of on-demand entertainment, and data costs.
  • In addition to our 222m paying households, we estimate that Netflix is being shared with over 100m additional households, including over 30m in the UCAN region. Account sharing as a percentage of our paying membership hasn’t changed much over the years, but, coupled with the first factor, means it’s harder to grow membership in many markets – an issue that was obscured by our COVID growth.
  • Other factors Netflix pointed to include: competition for viewing with linear TV as well as YouTube, Amazon, and Hulu, as well as traditional entertainment competitors. Netflix also believes that “macro factors” such as sluggish economic growth, increasing inflation, geopolitical events such as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and some continued disruption from COVID are likely having an impact as well.

How does Netflix plan to fix their problem? The Hollywood Reporter has the answer to that question. Netflix is planning to roll out less expensive plans, supported by advertising. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Netflix co-CEO Reed Hastings said that they will be examining what those plans will look like “over the next year or two”. Netflix COO Greg Peters said that advertising “is an exciting opportunity for us.” Hastings said that when Netflix launches its ad-backed tier, it would do so as a publisher, without data tracking and ad-matching that some competitors are embracing.

Personally, I don’t think the offer of a less expensive Netflix, filled with ads, is going to entice people to get a Netflix account. That’s especially true if the ads break into shows or movies in random places, destroying the mood for viewers.


Netflix is Raising the Prices on Two of its Plans



The Associated Press reported that Netflix is raising the price for its most popular U.S. video streaming plan by 10 percent. This change is going to affect most of Netflix’s 53 million U.S. subscribers.

As you might expect, the Netflix US Twitter account has been busy answering questions about the pricing change and clarifying things. The pricing change hasn’t happened yet. Netflix users will start getting emails about the pricing change on October 19, 2017, or after. Your email might arrive 30 days out from your billing date.

Netflix tweeted that the new prices are $7.99, $10.99, and $13.99. Netflix offers three streaming plans: Basic, Standard, and Premium. The Verge provided a good explanation of the price changes:

The standard tier, which allows subscribers to watch on two screens at once, will be bumped up from $9.99 to $10.99 per month. The premium tier, which is available in Ultra HD and allows users to watch on up to four screens, will go from $11.99 to $13.99. The Basic $7.99 per month plan will remain the same.

In other words, people who have the Basic Netflix plan will not see a change in price. Those who have either the Standard or Premium Netflix plans will see a change in price and will be paying an extra $1 or $2 per month for their Netflix plan beginning on, or sometime after, October 19, 2017.

The reason for the price increase appears to be so Netflix can continue to make original content.


Cleveland Comic-Con 2017



Wizard World’s Cleveland Comic-Con kicked off its third annual show this past weekend, with a pretty good crowd. Fans gathered at the Huntington Convention Center in downtown Cleveland to get their fill of comics, art, toys and several celebs. Famous faces included: Lou Ferrigno (The Incredible Hulk), Gene Simmons (Kiss), Jennifer Carpenter (Dexter), Millie Bobby Brown (Stranger Things), Charisma Carpenter and Nicholas Brendon (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Jewel Staite (Firefly), Nichelle Nichols (Star Trek) and more. Wizard World Comic Con Cleveland will return, March 23-25, 2018.


Netflix launches its own speed test website thanks to frustrating ISPs



Netflix_Web_LogoA big deal has been made of bandwidth when using Netflix, especially so after the streaming service had to arrange a payment agreement with Comcast because it was throttling customers — a fee that amounted to little more than protection money from a mob shakedown.

Netflix also publishes a monthly report that calls out ISPs for their speeds. Since that public shaming wasn’t really enough, the company is now releasing its own speed test so it’s customers can see exactly what it is they are paying for.

The new site, which goes by the name fast.com, is similar to some existing services. It’s the same, but different from what the company has been doing.

“This consumer speed test is different than our Netflix ISP Speed Index. Fast.com measures your personal Internet connection at any given time. The speed index measures average monthly speeds of actual Netflix streams during prime time hours”, Netflx claims.

The service works in every country and you don’t have to be a Netflix customer use it. It’s also free, which is always a plus for people.