Netflix is officially releasing a streaming plan that is completely free for subscribers, hoping that getting more people in the door will eventually lead to more paid subscriptions in the long run. With services like Peacock making certain subscriptions free, it was only a matter of time before bigger streamers like Netflix started looking for ways to make their service more accessible. On Monday, the streamer announced that a new plan was being offered free of charge, but only in one country and with some serious stipulations.
The free Netflix plan is now live in Kenya, and will continue rolling out to more users over the course of the next few weeks. In addition to only being available in Kenya, the free Netflix plan is only available to users on Android mobile devices. They will be able to log on without any payment information and watch a significant selection of titles from Netflix's library. The free version, which also comes without ads, gives users access to about 25% of the content available on the paid tiers.
According to Cathy Conk, Netflix Product Innovation Director, this is all about getting more people in Kenya to experience Netflix for the first time. The hope is that they will give the service a try since they won't have to pay for it, and that will be enough to show them the full version is worth the subscription price.
"If you've never watched Netflix before — and many people in Kenya haven't — this is a great way to experience our service," Conk wrote in a Netflix blog post. "And if you like what you see, it's easy to upgrade to one of our paid plans so you can enjoy our full catalog on your TV or laptop as well."
There isn't any complete list of the shows and movies available on the free version, but the opening paragraph of Conk's post mentions titles like Blood & Water, Army of the Dead, and Bridgerton.
Given that Netflix has become so popular in the United States and other major markets, don't expect a free version of the service to launch here any time soon. We likely got our "free" version at the very beginning of the streaming site's existence, when it was merely an added bonus you received for subscribing to the original DVD mailing service.