Monday, August 8, 2022

Netflix Homes and Games

Emma Roth, Jay Peters, and Richard Lawler (Hacker News):

Netflix is testing a new way to tackle password sharing in Argentina, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and the Dominican Republic (as reported first by Bloomberg). A support page for Netflix in Honduras clearly states the test will prompt users to pay an additional fee if they use an account on a TV or TV-connected device at a location outside their primary household for over two weeks. Each additional home will cost an extra 219 pesos per month, per home in Argentina ($1.17 US), and $2.99 everywhere else.

It sounds like this isn’t going to work very well for people who regularly travel to the same location.

The company also started experimenting with a profile transfer tool that’s supposed to make it easier for someone to transfer their recommendations, watch history, and My List. This is a way for the platform to passively nudge password sharers toward opening a new account or getting on a subaccount.

Tim Hardwick:

Netflix’s mobile gaming platform has been engaging less than 1 percent of Netflix subscribers since its launch last November, according to new data from app analytics company Apptopia (via CNBC).

It’s too bad this doesn’t work on tvOS.

3 Comments RSS · Twitter

"It sounds like this isn’t going to work very well for people who regularly travel to the same location."

I guess Netflix will be able to tell when there's no concurrent access, but no doubt there will be lots of false positives.

However, as somebody who keeps paying for multiple streaming service subscriptions simply because other people use them, I think Netflix ignores how account sharing creates lock-in. The only thing I *want* to watch on Netflix is Stranger Things. If I'm the only person who can use this account, I'll unsubscribe, and I suspect this is the case for many people: a lot of these subscriptions are relatively low-value, and only make sense *because* they can be shared. Three people deriving a bit of value warrants one subscription, but not one for each of these three people.

OTOH, I'm guessing that Netflix is aware of this, and its data tells it that preventing free account sharing will increase overall subscription revenue.

@Plume I don’t think it’s just about concurrent access. They say they are tracking IPs, and it sounds like you only get 2 weeks of use from an IP other than your primary one.

Yeah, I just assumed that their actual heuristic would be a bit smarter than just "two weeks of usage from non-primary IP", but if Netflix claims that this is how it works, I guess not.

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