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May 25, 2023

Netflix Implements Measures to Tackle Account Sharing, Sparking User Backlash

Long-awaited and much-talked-about crackdown is coming to the U.S

Netflix has recently taken steps to address the issue of password sharing among its subscribers, rolling out a crackdown that is now reaching users in the United States and other global markets. However, the implementation of this new policy faced delays after the company observed cancellations in markets where similar changes were already introduced. U.S subscribers can remove users from their accounts or purchase a separate subscription which gives an extra user for $7.99 monthly. Several markets are expected to follow.

Netflix is to supply tools to help with this. Subscribers can now easily view and manage the devices that are connected to their account, allowing them to remove any unauthorized devices. Additionally, the platform offers password reset options to enhance account security.

For those who have been sharing someone else's account, Netflix has introduced a "Transfer Profile" feature. This feature enables users to transfer their existing account information, including their viewing history and watchlist, to their own individual account.

Despite Netflix's efforts to address password sharing, the new restrictions have faced significant backlash from consumers. However, Netflix remains confident that these measures will contribute to the company's long-term growth and financial stability. During the first-quarter earnings call, Netflix co-CEO Greg Peters highlighted that the response to the crackdown resembled how subscribers reacted to previous price increases.

Peters reassured investors that the initial cancellations were followed by positive growth in both membership and revenue. This consistency in results across different markets validates the company's approach and demonstrates its potential.

Netflix previously expanded access to Canada, New Zealand, Portugal, and Spain after testing the account-sharing feature in some Latin American markets. As stated, Netflix now plans to bring these to a wider range of global markets.

The delay in implementing the crackdown during the first quarter was likely a strategic decision to minimize the impact on net subscriber additions. It is anticipated that Netflix will enforce the password-sharing changes for U.S. subscribers by June 30, despite the net increase of 1.75 million global subscribers in the previous quarter.

Netflix's decision to enforce restrictions on account sharing has garnered mixed reactions from users, as the streaming giant addresses concerns related to unauthorized access. In an increasingly competitive streaming market, Netflix faces challenges in maintaining its subscriber base. While other streaming services expand their content offerings, Netflix's move to raise costs for account sharing may be seen as a departure from the trend of delivering more value to subscribers. The impact of this crackdown remains uncertain, particularly in the crucial U.S. market. As Netflix takes steps to reinforce account ownership, it strives to strike a delicate balance between user satisfaction and its long-term business growth.

Neil Hodgson Coyle
Neil Hodgson-Coyle
Editorial chief at TechNews180
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