(CTN News) – It appears that Netflix’s crackdown on password sharing to boost subscriber numbers has backfired as new figures show that the number of subscribers fell for the first time since Netflix launched in Australia in 2015.
During the past year, the number of Netflix subscribers has plummeted three per cent to 6.1 million, according to Telsyte’s annual industry survey of the entertainment sector.
As a result, in the last year alone, there have been around 189,000 Aussies who have stopped using the service.
With Netflix’s announcement in May, it was announced that families and friends living in different locations would no longer be able to watch Netflix using the same Netflix account.
As an alternative, it has added a new payment plan option that allows users to add an extra member to their standard or premium plan for a monthly fee of $7.99 in addition to their standard or premium plan.
There was a backlash from outraged customers on social media threatening to cancel their accounts as a result of the situation.
Mark Neilsen, an utilities writer and streaming broadband expert at Finder, told news.com.au that by cracking down on password sharing, Netflix was trying to increase the number of subscribers, but this move hasn’t worked as planned.
It has been reported that the cost of living pressures are the biggest reason people are dropping their streaming subscriptions, according to Neilsen.
During our survey conducted in August, we found that 27 percent of respondents had unsubscribed from a streaming service and of those who unsubscribed, 44 percent had done so to save money.
Although Netflix has fallen in popularity in Australia, the streaming service remains one of the most popular in the country.
There has been a substantial rise in the number of subscribers to Paramount+ over the past year, up 41 percent to 1.5 million subscribers. As a result, it was followed by Foxtel’s Binge, which saw its audience grow 22 per cent to 1.5 million viewers.
Over the past year, Amazon Prime Video’s subscribers increased by nine percent to 4.5 million, Kayo Sports by eight percent to 1.4 million, Disney+’s subscribers increased by one percent to 3.1 million, and Stan’s subscribers increased by two percent to 2.6 million.
There are currently a large number of people on free trials, although these may soon become a thing of the past.
During an interview with The Australian Financial Review, Mike Sneesby, CEO of Nine Entertainment, which owns Stan, stated that free trials no longer make sense and that Stan may discontinue them in the near future.
Similarly, Disney+ and Kayo have abolished free trials, with Kayo’s change taking effect by the end of September.