Durban - South Africans sharing their Netflix password with friends and family in other households may soon pay an extra fee.
The move comes as Netflix has stated that account sharing between households impacts the company’s ability to invest in new TV shows and movies.
According to the latest announcement by the US-based video streaming service, Netflix has “been working on ways to enable members who share outside their household to do so easily and securely, while also paying a bit more".
Chengyi Long, director of product innovation at Netflix, said the company had always made it easy for people who live together to share their Netflix account, with features like separate profiles and multiple streams in standard and premium plans.
“While these have been hugely popular, they have also created some confusion about when and how Netflix can be shared. As a result, accounts are being shared between households - impacting our ability to invest in great new TV and films for our members,” Long added.
Netflix said that it would launch and test two new features for users in Chile, Costa Rica, and Peru over the next few weeks, indicating that the feature could be rolled out to other countries in the future.
The feature will allow users to add sub-accounts for up to two people they do not live with on standard and premium plans.
The move will allow each user to have their own profile, including personalised recommendations, logins and passwords, at an extra cost of 2,380 Peso in Chile, $2.99 in Costa Rica, and 7.9 Sol in Peru.
At the current exchange rate, South Africans may need to fork out between R45 and R50 extra per month on top of their existing subscription of R159 for the standard package and R199 for the premium package to be able to share their password with friends and family.
Netflix currently has four plans available for South Africans, including the cheapest mobile plan, at R49 per month, allowing streaming on one phone or tablet and one screen at a time.
Meanwhile, the R99 package allows users to stream on mobile, tablet or desktop, also limited to one device at a time.
The standard package, priced at R159 per month, offers streaming on two devices simultaneously, in HD quality.
In contrast, the premium package costs R199 and allows up to UHD streaming on four screens simultaneously.