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Netflix is testing a new feature for paid sharing outside households

By Kara Santos Published Mar 17, 2022 1:23 pm

Netflix has announced that they are testing a new feature that will add an additional subscription fee for people sharing Netflix outside of their household.

According to the streamer, the improper sharing of accounts outside the household has affected Netflix’s ability to invest in new content for subscribers.

In a news release posted to its website Wednesday (March 16), the streaming giant announced that it will begin testing ways to make users sharing an account outside the household pay for the additional members.

After years of turning a blind eye to password-sharing, the company ran a limited test last year prompting users to enter their account details asking viewers to verify that they share a household with the account holder. A message prompt also encouraged users to try the streaming service free for 30 days before subscribing to their own accounts.

“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,” explained Chengyi Long, director of Product Innovation at Netflix.

Currently, Netflix will be testing the new feature in three countries, namely Chile, Costa Rica, and Peru. 

Adding an extra member or “sub account” for up to two people they don’t live with will now cost additional money for subscribers. These new extra member accounts though will have their own profile, personalized recommendations, login and password. These will come at a lower price (the local equivalent of P155.90) than a regular Netflix subscription.

Members on their Basic, Standard, and Premium plans can also enable people who share their account to transfer profile information either to a new account or an Extra Member sub account. This will enable users to keep their viewing history, My List, and personalized recommendations.

“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,” according to the streamer.

Currently, the feature will be tested out only in the three countries mentioned in the next few weeks, with a global rollout yet to be announced.