Price increases are nothing new for Netflix subscribers (or subscribers to any service for that matter). If you’ve had Netflix for any length of time, you’re almost certainly paying more now than you did when you signed up.
But was Netflix’s last price increase finally too much? Data shows that for many subscribers, it may have been. According to a recent study from Earnin, a company that allows people to get a low-cost advance on their paycheck, Netflix’s most recent price increase (from $9.99 to $10.99 a month) would deter “a significant number” of lower-income families from signing up. Most noteworthy is that Hulu and YouTube both grew in number of potential customers.
The increase was only $1, but the $10 threshold is apparently a big one. The number of potential Netflix subscribers has been flat for a while. The latest period (with the new increase) marks the first time that potential subscribers decreased.
How did Earnin get this data? Members who use the service agree to give the company access to their bank account and access to their transaction history. Earnin then analyzes users’ data to see how they’re spending their money and lets users get a short-term loan against their next paycheck if they’re running low on funds.
Of course, it’s worth noting that Earnin data isn’t necessarily representative of all low-income families. People who use a finance app on a smartphone are likely to be a little more tech-savvy, and more likely to be Netflix subscribers as such. But it can’t be overstated that people are starting to see Netflix as too expensive.
Will this data matter to Netflix? Probably not. In fact, industry experts say another increase probably isn’t too far away. A number of new streaming services are on the way though, including one from Disney, so Netflix is past the time they can just sit back as the only player in the game and charge what they want.
The streaming landscape is changing, that’s for sure.