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WATCH: Netflix at war to keep subscribers as it stands to lose 2 million more

Published Jun 6, 2022

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Netflix has borne the brunt of household cost-cutting globally as it implements various strategies to maintain viewership.

The company has stated that it stands to lose up to 2 million more subscribers by the end of the second quarter of 2022, after already losing 200 000 after the first quarter of the year.

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The company's global performance for the second quarter of 2022 is expected to be shared with its shareholders within the coming weeks.

Since its inception, Netflix has been on a steady incline in subscriber growth, a trend only thrown off since the first quarter of this year.

However, the streaming service faces a rocky road ahead with numerous factors to blame, such as its content and content rights from other production houses, among other hindrances.

Strategies

It is evident to the public and subscribers that Netflix is currently facing a difficult time. In recent months the company has implemented a series of changes previously reported by IOL in an effort to retain its subscriber base.

While Netflix battles against new platforms, in April, Netflix rolled out a new Double Thumbs Up feature to allow its viewers to rate a movie or show two thumbs up instead of just one on the streaming platform.

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Other changes implemented by the platform included other minor features like the ability at default for trailers on the homepage not to play automatically when opened.

In the South African market, Netflix made a financial commitment to support local content, which became evident with the release of new and popular local series and films such as the Keeping Up With the Kandasamy's latest movie and the globally acclaimed Blood and Water teen drama.

To its detriment, the company recently also announced a clamp-down on sharing passwords and the intention to limit the number of households that could share a single account. Coupled with this, the company also introduced a subscription increase for local subscribers from R169 to R199.

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Hindrances

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While it might be too early to tell if strategies implemented in the first quarter of the year were fruitful in keeping its viewership, Netflix now goes against a robust line-up of local and international streaming services.

In a previously mentioned bout - Netflix went up against South Africa's newest streaming service, Disney+, already 40 percent cheaper than Netflix at R119, which launched locally on May 18. The launch of Disney+ added to the company's existing competition against the likes of Showmax, Amazon Prime Video, BritBox, and others, to mention a few.

While many South Africans may be able to afford more than just a single streaming service, price hikes, competition from rivals, and the current local economic climate, resulting in just under R25 per litre of fuel - place a burden on the pockets of locals and thus on Netflix's financial performance.

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