Netflix is making some big moves in 2019, and not all of them are going to be exciting for users of the streaming service. On Tuesday, what is certain to be the most frustrating of these changes went into effect. As of this week, Netflix is substantially increasing its prices for subscribers in the United States.
The standard plan, which previously cost $10.99 per month, has now been increased to $12.99 per month, a hike of 18 percent. Additionally, the Basic Plan offered by the streaming service, which allows users to watch in standard definition on just one screen at a time, is going from $7.99 to $8.99. The Premium Plan is going from $13.99 up to $15.99.
The new costs will go into effect immediately for new subscribers. For those that are already members of Netflix's services, the price change will occur at some point over the next three months. The price increases will soon expand to 40 markets in Latin America, where Netflix bills in U.S. currency. However, the price changes won't go into effect in Netflix's two biggest Latin American markets, Mexico and Brazil.
“We change pricing from time to time as we continue investing in great entertainment and improving the overall Netflix experience,” a Netflix spokeswoman said in a statement.
This is the first price change for Netflix since the end of 2017. At that time, the hike in price wasn't seen as too big of a deal in the eyes of users, as the company faced minimal cancellations. What remains to be seen is how subscribers will react to this new change. With streaming services popping up left and right, and major players like Disney+ set to arrive later this year, this could be the time that a significant number of users decide to jump off the bandwagon.
A price increase of this magnitude is difficult to take in, but it isn't necessarily surprising. As of September 30th, Netflix was reporting $8.34 billion in long-term debt, which was up from $6.50 billion in 2017. Netflix continues spending massive amounts of money on content, so the company needed to find a way to offset those costs. The price hike seems like the first of perhaps many steps towards solving that problem.
Will you still be paying for Netflix after the price increase? Let us know in the comments!