Netflix on Wednesday announced it plans to test a new payment option that would charge account holders an additional fee to allow users outside of their household to stream content.
The California-based company looks to launch the test in Chile, Costa Rica and Peru in the next few weeks. The test gives subscribers the ability to add up to two sub-accounts for a monthly fee of US$2.99 each in Costa Rica. Those using the added accounts get their own profile, personalised recommendations, login and password.
Those who share accounts can also transfer their profile data either to an entirely new account or a sub-account. This lets them retain their viewing history and My List – data that’s used by the platform’s algorithm to filter content and make personalised recommendations.
Why Netflix is choosing to conduct the test in the three markets mentioned earlier is not known. It’s also unclear as of yet whether it plans to eventually bring these same options to other markets down the line.
The test seems in line with Netflix’s recent push to discourage unauthorised account sharing among its users. Last year, the streaming pioneer also tested a verification system that prompted users outside of the account holder’s household to sign-up for a new account.
"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," Chengyi Long, Netflix Director of Product Innovation, wrote in a blog post.
"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."
Netflix announced it plans to test a new payment option that would charge account holders an additional fee to allow users outside their household to stream content.
The streaming company is launching the test in Chile, Costa Rica and Peru in the next few weeks, with sub-accounts costing a monthly fee of US$2.99 each. Up to two sub-accounts can be added to the main account.
It's not yet known whether Netflix plans to eventually roll out this new add-on payment option to other markets.