A new report from The Information has identified that Netflix continues to record a decline in the number of long-term subscribers, as subscriptions get canceled. According to survey data by the outlet, more subscribers who have been with the streaming service over the past three years account for 13 percent of cancellations just within the first quarter of 2022. Netflix after hinting at a global crackdown on password sharing this time last month, for the first time in more than a decade, reported a loss of about 200,000 paying subscribers in the first quarter which ended on March 31. The company projected a total loss of 2 million more subscribers by the completion of the second quarter.
As the number of overall cancellations continues to skyrocket, reports say that new users only account for a smaller fraction of them. This is another indicator that the streaming platform is currently struggling to retain subscribers for longer periods of time. Another survey revealed that users who have subscribed for less than one year made up 70 percent of cancellations, while long-term subscribers accounted for six percent. 60 percent of cancellations were made by newer subscribers last quarter.
2022 definitely started out really rough for the streaming platform define started 2022 out rough. With more and more cancellations reported monthly and competitors like Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery, Paramount Global, NBC, Universal, Apple TV+ and a host of others flooding the video streaming space, Netflix currently sits at a total of 74.58 million subscribers in the US and Canada.
A number of factors have been identified as contributors to Netflix’s subscriber decline. In March, the streaming giant suspended its services in Russia due to its invasion of Ukraine. Netflix refused to comply with Russian mandates to stream and distribute 20 Russian channels to aid the spread of propaganda that favored the Russian narrative of the crisis. Netflix’s refusal ended in a suspension of its service thereby cutting off over a million subscribers in the country. Netflix announced a raise in price across all its subscription tiers, basic plan to $9.99 / month (from $8.99), its standard plan to $15.49 / month (from $13.99), and its premium tier to $19.99 / month (from $17.99). Rumors say the price increase will move to many other countries in a matter of months.
Reports say chances are very high that the streaming giant will roll out a number of changes within the next few months. Netflix has also announced plans to roll out a cheaper, ad-supported plan sometime very soon. Netflix co-CEO Reed Hastings hasn’t been shy about being “quite open to offering even lower prices with advertising, as a consumer choice.”
Netflix is currently testing a feature in Chile, Costa Rica, and Peru that allow subscribers to add “sub accounts” for anyone using the service outside their households at a lower price. Netflix is also reportedly working on live streaming for comedy specials and a host of other unscripted content. However, this is the best time for the streaming platform to introduce new ideas that can help salvage the decline rate of customers and keep pace with the likes of Disney Plus, which reportedly added 8 million new subscribers last quarter and already has both a live streaming feature and an ad-supported tier confirmed to be in the works. That said, despite the decline in numbers, Netflix will continue to be a fav for some of us.