NETFLIX IS RAISING prices for its video streaming customers in Canada and the U.S., less than a year and a half since its last price increase.
The Los Gatos, California, company announced Friday that prices are going up by a couple of bucks, depending on the plan. The “standard” plan that most people take, which allows for two simultaneous streams, now costs $16.49 per month in Canada, up from from $14.99.
The price hikes will roll out to new subscribers immediately, while existing subscribers will be notified 30 days before they have to fork over the higher monthly rate.
With subscriber growth slowing in North America, primarily because the competition between video streaming services has never been tougher, it appears the Netflix strategy is to squeeze some more moola out of its existing customers.
Of course, raising prices carries the risk that people will cancel. Netflix remains the dominant North American streaming service, but others, such as HBO Max and Disney+, have increased in popularity. What’s more, this is the third time in the past three years that Netflix has raised prices.
The obvious question is whether Netflix is offering additional value for the higher price. Netflix had earmarked (US) $17 billion to spend on original and acquired content in 2021, and analysts expect the company’s content budget has only grown more for 2022.
With a stream of recent hits like Red Notice and Squid Game, and much-hyped, upcoming sports documentaries on the PGA and tennis, Netflix thinks it’s providing enough value to subscribers to raise prices and not trigger a mass exodus to the competition. Time will tell.