After raising prices a year and half ago, Netflix is once again upping the cost of its most popular plans in the U.S. While its Basic Plan, which offers only one continuous stream and no high-definition content, will keep its monthly rate of $9, the Standard Plan will increase from $12 to $13 and the Premium Plan will make an even larger jump from $16 to $18. Netflix defended this latest round of price increases in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter:
“We understand people have more entertainment choices than ever and we’re committed to delivering an even better experience for our members,” a company spokeswoman said in a statement. “We’re updating our prices so that we can continue to offer more variety of TV shows and films — in addition to our great fall line up. As always we offer a range of plans so that people can pick a price that works best for their budget.”
While raising its price was inevitable, the move comes at an awkward time for Netflix. As it recognizes in its statement, the past year has seen the launch of Peacock, HBO Max, and the extremely popular Disney+. During that time, Netflix also lost two of its most-watched series when The Office and Friends jumped to Peacock and HBO Max respectively. On top of that, Americans are experiencing rough economic times due to the pandemic, which is currently trending toward a third separate surge in cases. Granted, that makes for captive audiences while practicing responsible social distancing at home, but will those same audiences appreciate being hit with yet another price increase at such a vulnerable time? Then again, with more films making the jump to streaming as theaters struggle with reopening, that extra dollar or two might not be so bad.
(Via The Hollywood Reporter)