Netflix is preparing to launch a cheaper subscription option that will be subsidized by advertisements. However, occasional commercials won’t be the only limitation.
Netflix confirmed during an earnings call that the company is renegotiating content agreements for its future ad-supported plan. That means studios must agree to allow their content to show up on the ad-supported plan, and knowing how contract negotiations usually go with streaming services, it’s likely not all studios will agree to Netflix’s terms. Netflix’s cheaper plan with ads might have a few movies and shows missing, in addition to advertisements.
Netflix executives said in the earnings call, “The vast majority of what people watch on Netflix we can include in the ad-supported tier. There’s some things that don’t, and we’re in conversation with the studios on. But if we launched the product today, the members of the ad tier will have a great experience.”
It’s likely that most (if not all) Netflix originals will be present on the ad-supported plan, so you probably don’t have to worry about missing Stranger Things, The Crown, Queer Eye, and other Netflix productions. Shows and movies licensed from other studios could be missing, which in the United States currently includes Seinfeld, Breaking Bad, Community, Better Call Saul, The IT Crowd, and many others.
Netflix hopes to debut the ad-supported plan in early 2023. Disney+ is also working on a cheaper plan with advertisements that should arrive sometime in 2022.
At the same time, Netflix is testing changes that prevent account password sharing, by charging extra for each home where an account is used. If the new limitations are rolled out everywhere, it could push many people to sign up for individual ad-supported plans… or just stop paying for Netflix entirely.
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