Netflix has announced the financial results for its third fiscal quarter of 2023, revealing subscriber growth and a still-favorable attitude about ad revenue. Nestled within the quarterly earnings report was a tidbit that not all Netflix subscribers will be happy about, however: there’s another price hike incoming. The rate increase will affect Basic and Premium subscribers, with the change kicking off today for customers located in the U.S., U.K., and France.
The Basic plan is no longer available to new subscribers — Netflix phased it out a while ago, replacing it with a now-cheaper ad-supported plan called Standard with Ads, which is priced at $6.99 per month. Neither the Standard with Ads nor the Standard ($15.49 per month) without-ads plans are changing, but those who choose to stick with their existing Basic subscription will see their rate increase from $9.99 to $11.99 per month. Premium subscribers, meanwhile, will experience a price hike from $19.99 to $22.99 per month. This rate increase follows Netflix’s price hike in 2022, which had impacted all of its subscription plans.
Netflix says it’s still cheaper than a movie ticket
“Our starting price is extremely competitive with other streamers,” Netflix told its shareholders in its quarterly earnings report, “and at $6.99 per month in the U.S., for example, it’s much less than the average price of a single movie ticket.” Whether that sort of reasoning will be enough to keep subscribers around is another matter. The company has earned itself a reputation for frequently canceling its original shows after only two or three seasons, much to the frustration of many viewers.
The company’s reputation aside, it faces another issue that has driven some cord-cutters back to piracy: the fragmentation of the streaming industry as a whole. Whereas customers could, in the industry’s early days, access a huge catalog of popular third-party content through Netflix, that is no longer the case. Many streaming services are now competing for consumers’ limited entertainment budgets, and with prices creeping upward across the board, some have complained that their total monthly expenditure is once again as high as their old cable bill.