Netflix remains one of the most popular streaming services in the world, but people have started to notice some major regressions. The variety of good content has dwindled in recent years, for one thing. Classics like The Office and Family Guy that led many people to flock to the platform are now gone, with mediocre original series taking their place.
However, users have another greater concern. Are Netflix prices going up? Should they ditch their beloved platform for a more cost-effective option? Here’s everything you need to know about Netflix’s current price situation.
Yes, Netflix Prices Are Going Up
The prices for pretty much everything have increased since the beginning of COVID-19, and Netflix is no exception. The streaming service has seen two price hikes already in 2022 – a process that spokesperson Kumiko Hidaka said would happen “over weeks” earlier in the year.
The most recent widespread price hike happened on March 30, bringing the prices for Netflix’s new plan structure up to the following monthly rates:
- Basic (no HD, one screen): $9.99 per month
- Standard (HD, two screens): $15.49 per month
- Premium (4K, four screens): $19.99 per month
In an email to customers, Netflix explained that the price increases are necessary to “bring [the viewer] more great entertainment” and “allow us to deliver even more value for your membership – with stories that lift you up, move you or simply make your day a bit better.”
So, what great entertainment has Netflix added in the months since the March price hike? The latest seasons of Better Call Saul, Peaky Blinders and Ozark received positive receptions. Hype for Stranger Things also got revitalized with the new volume’s release, but as we said before, most of the original content just isn’t up to standard.
However, to Netflix’s credit, it has added some impressive films and TV shows from other production companies. Here are some names you might recognize:
- Forrest Gump
- The Departed
- The Hurt Locker
- The “Jackass” Saga
- Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy
- The Amazing Spiderman
- Ned’s Declassified School Survival Guide, seasons 1-2
- Zoey 101, seasons 1-2
Netflix was always more of a TV show platform than a movie platform, but the latest installments could mark an identity shift for the brand. One thing is for sure: the higher monthly rates aren’t going away any time soon.
Should You Cancel Your Netflix Subscription?
Based on Netflix’s content shortcomings and its increased prices, the question inevitably arises: Should you cancel your subscription? If you have lost interest in the service and don’t think it’s worth the money, go for it. However, leaving Netflix for Hulu or HBO Max simply trades one average service for another. It doesn’t solve your problem.
Instead, you should first downgrade your subscription and see if a smaller subscription plan works better for you. If you have a Standard or Premium subscription, lower it to the next tier so you can save money on the monthly rate. Here’s how to do it:
- Go to Netflix.com on a web browser and sign in to your account.
- Hover over your avatar and select “Account” from the drop-down menu.
- Find “Plan Details” and select “Change Plan.”
- Choose “Next Plan,” find the plan you want and click the blue “Continue” button.
Of course, you won’t be able to view Netflix content in crisp 1080p or 4K resolution. You will also have one less TV to work with. However, if your goal is to reduce the monthly rate to justify holding onto Netflix, downgrading your subscription is the best option outside of cancellation. Don’t give up your favorite Netflix shows and movies if you don’t have to!
The Silver Lining: Chance to Buy Low on Netflix Stock
There is some silver lining to this whole situation: Netflix stock has plummeted by 68% in the last year, with one share costing just $190. The price hikes have certainly contributed to this trend, along with a few other reasons:
- Loss of over 2 million subscribers
- Economic inflation
- Rising popularity of other streaming services (Disney+, Apple TV+, Hulu, HBO Max)
Stagnant growth and a surge in competition is a recipe for disaster for most companies, but Netflix is established enough to withstand the storm. Stock market analysts have noticed some signs that Netflix stock could spike in the coming months:
- Netflix has released 450 employees from its 11,000+ staff since May 2022, suggesting the company is cleaning house and consolidating expenses. Fewer expenses lead to more revenue growth, as a general rule.
- Netflix also stopped borrowing money at the beginning of 2022, ending its debt accumulation and creating more financial breathing room.
- Finally, Netflix has embraced the idea of running ads to generate more revenue. An ad-supported version of the service could create a new wave of interest for the platform and allow prices to return to previous levels.
If you want to buy low on Netflix stock and turn a profit, now is the time. The company’s low subscription counts may return to equilibrium as the hype for other streaming services fizzles out, so you want to take advantage and take advantage of that $190 price tag before it increases again.
Price Hikes Are No Reason to Panic – Yet
To recap: are Netflix prices going up? Yes, they’ve gone up twice already in 2022 and may increase again later this year. However, these price hikes are no reason to panic – yet. Netflix remains a viable streaming service, and temporary setbacks suggest that more growth is on the horizon. However, if the company’s regression continues into 2023, perhaps the streaming service has run its course. For now, viewers should try to downgrade their subscriptions and buy low on Netflix stock.
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