Netflix revealed on Wednesday that it is no longer offering its Basic Plan for new or rejoining subscribers in the U.S. and the U.K. The Basic Plan, which was US$9.99 per month, did not have ads, and it allowed for one stream, as well as downloads to a phone or tablet for offline viewing. Subscribers currently on the Basic Plan can stay on the plan if they do not upgrade/downgrade or cancel it. The other plans remain available.
Netflix dropped the Basic Plan in Canada last month.
The other plans include Standard with ads for US$6.99 per month; Standard without ads, supporting two streaming devices and download targets for US$15.99 per month; and Premium, which features Ultra HD for four devices simultaneously and download for six devices for US$19.99 per month.
Netflix recently brought its new password-sharing policy to multiple other markets, including the United States. Netflix launched the new policy in test markets Chile, Costa Rica, and Peru on February 5. The company then extended its new password-sharing policy to Canada, New Zealand, Spain, and Portugal later that month. Netflix said that in each of these countries, there was an immediate “cancel reaction,” but it was eventually eclipsed by former sharers creating new accounts or paying more to formally add new users to existing accounts.
The company had shared the policy on its United States FAQ page before removing it and attributing it to an error. The deleted policy FAQ page stated that all devices using a single Netflix account must be associated with one singular primary location that the company will verify through mandatory logins to the same Wi-Fi connection every 31 days. Netflix will prompt secondary users from other locations to register for their own account, or for a second account. Subscribers who are traveling for an extended period of time will be able to request a temporary code for hotel smart TVs, company laptops, and more in-transit devices for seven consecutive days at a time. Subscribers will be able to add up to two secondary users who reside outside of the account’s primary location for an additional charge.
The streaming service is also offering a profile transfer feature under the new policy that will enable users to transfer queue lists and watch history to another account.
The company announced that it has added 1.75 million subscribers in the first quarter of 2023, bringing the global total of Netflix subscribers to 232.5 million, the highest number of subscribers in the world for a single streaming service.
Netflix announced that it will end its DVD rental service after 25 years. It will ship out its final DVD rentals on September 29 later this year. The company began in 1997 as an online DVD purchase and rental service, but shuttered its DVD sales service after a year. Netflix then became well-known as a DVD rental service, with its packages coming in iconic red envelopes. The company launched its streaming service in 2007, which overshadowed its rental service over time.