Netflix has announced a price hike for most of their plans for its US subscribers. The prices have been bumped by one to two dollars. Here’s how the changes break down:
- The “Premium” plan (4k and 4 simultaneous streams) will go from $15.99 a month to $17.99.
- The “Standard” plan (1080p and 2 simultaneous streams) will go from $12.99 a month to $13.99.
- The “Basic” plan (SD and 1 stream at a time) will stay at $8.99.
New subscribers will have to pay the updated monthly fees, while current subscribers will see the new prices over the next few weeks as they roll out with customer’s billing cycles. “As always we offer a range of plans so that people can pick a price that works best for their budget,” a spokesperson from the company stated.
Industry insiders have long anticipated another round of price hikes at Netflix, which last increased subscription fees in the United States in January 2019. Recently, Netflix increased the cost of some plans in Canada. Netflix rolls out price changes on a country-by-country basis and the change “in the US does not influence or indicate a global price change,” a Netflix spokesperson said.
Netflix doesn’t outright say why they’re increasing the price now — but between a massive increase in usage/demand during lockdown, an ever-growing number of competitors battling for the same marquee exclusives and the added cost and complexity of producing original content during a pandemic, it’s not hard to imagine why their costs are going up.
The price hikes also arrive at a time when people have more options for entertainment than ever before — especially in the United States. The US alone has HBO Max, Disney Plus, Peacock, YouTube, Twitch and more. Prices are being updated “so that we can continue to offer more variety of TV shows and films,” a spokesperson told The Verge.
The price hikes also come as Netflix is looking to invest more heavily into its content slate and product features. Netflix has increased its annual content budget every single year over the last seven years, spending a once estimated $18.5 billion in 2020 alone, though that may have changed this year due to the pandemic.