In a surprise move Netflix has announced that monthly subscription prices are going up for subscribers in both the United States and Canada. Reuters brings word of the increase, revealing that most plans from the service will increase between $1 to $2 apiece, the standard plan for example will be coing up form $13.99 a month to $15.49 a month. These mark the first price increases for Netflix in the US since October of 2020 and unlike the previous increases are effective immediately. The premium plan on Netflix, which gives users the option for ultra HD streaming, has been increased from $17.99 a month to $19.99 a month. Even the most basic plan from Netflix increased its plan by one dollar.
In a statement, a spokesperson for Netflix said: "We understand people have more entertainment choices than ever and we're committed to delivering an even better experience for our members...We're updating our prices so that we can continue to offer a wide variety of quality entertainment options. As always we offer a range of plans so members can pick a price that works for their budget."
The prices on Netflix have steadily gone up over the years, typically every other year, but this increase for even their most basic plan marks a first as the $8.99 price point for one stream at a time has been steady for some years. Netflix's basic plan was previously $7.99 back in 2019, with the latest dollar increase marking its first change in three years. All the other plans from the streamer went up in October of 2020, less than fifteen months ago.
As the statement from Netflix says, "people have more entertainment choices than ever." In the past year the streaming arms race has only gotten more competitive between Netflix, Disney+, HBO Max, Prime Video, Peacock, and Paramount+, with spending from these media companies largely in the billions as they attempt to create more and more streaming content. A previous report from 2021 revealed that Netflix had announced their plans to spend $17 billion on their original movies and shows last year alone, with no official number just yet about their spending plans for 2022. Considering the sudden price increase, and how competitors like Disney say they'll be spending $33 billion, it could be more.
Netflix's fourth quarter 2021 earnings call is scheduled to take place next week, expect more details then.