Customers are being notified by email about the price rise.
Not long after the mention of Netflix testing ads on its streaming platform, Netflix has increased the price of its most popular plan, shifting the price up by 50p per month for new subscribers.
Before the changes, Netflix has three price options. Users can pay £5.99 to stream standard definition videos to one device, £6.99 for HD content and the ability to play it on two screens, or £8.99 to be able to watch four things at once on the same account and access to 4K videos.
But that basic HD subscription — thought to be the most popular — will now be increased from £6.99 to £7.49 for new customers. The other two plans remain the same price.
Netflix last changed its prices in May 2014, when it promised a two-year price freeze for those that were already signed up. That deal seems to be in place, with existing customers being assured they won’t be hit by the change until 2016.
In the email notifying customers of the change, Netflix stressed that the extra money would help develop its original content. “In order to continue adding more TV programmes and films, including great Netflix series such as House of Cards and Better Call Saul, we are increasing our price for new members from £6.99 to £7.49 for the 2 screens at a time plan,” the company writes.
“As a thank you for being a member of Netflix already, your current pricing will remain in effect and we guarantee your price will not change until May 2016.”
Netflix says those paying £6.99 per month can keep their current rate for another year. From May 2016, it looks like everyone will be bumped up to the new pricing.
Netflix is investing heavily in new TV originals, and maintaining the standard set by House of Cards, Orange is the New Black and Daredevil doesn’t come cheap.
It’s not yet clear, however, if those paying the £6.99 rate will be offered a similar deal.
At least for now, it seems Netflix is keeping its cheapest plan (one device at a time, SD only) at £5.99 per month and its premium plan (four devices at a time, HD and 4K) at £8.99 per month. At face value the price rise is bad news, but maybe it’ll give Netflix the money to hire Clarkson and friends for House of Cars.
At the moment, UK prices seem to be the only ones affected with US and Australia rates remaining the same.
Netflix is estimated to have spent nearly $3 billion on content in 2014, with the figure for 2016 estimated to be $6 billion.
An increasing investment in original dramas such as Orange is the New Black, which will begin its third series tomorrow, could possibly explain the rise in customer fees.