Netflix is considering introducing adverts as a means of making a cheaper subscription plan available to viewers.
The streaming service has seen an unexpectedly sharp drop in subscribers in the first quarter of this year, prompting bosses to contemplate changes it has long resisted.
How many subscribers has Netflix lost?
Netflix’s customer base fell by 200,000 subscribers during the January to March quarter, the company announced on Tuesday (19 April).
It marks the first drop in members since the streaming service became available throughout most of the world six years ago.
The fall came in part from Netflix’s decision to withdraw from Russia in protest over the war against Ukraine, resulting in a loss of 700,000 subscribers, and a further two million subscribers are estimated to be lost in the current April to June quarter.
The company estimates around 100 million households worldwide are breaking its rules and watching its service for free by using the account of a friend or another family member, including 30 million in the US and Canada.
Cracking down on password sharing and creating a low-cost subscription supported by advertising are now being considered as it pushes to regain momentum and attract new members.
How much does Netflix cost in the UK?
Netflix announced a hike to its subscription costs in March, increasing the price of its Basic and Standard plans by £1 for new and existing customers.
The Basic plan, which allows subscribers to watch one screen at a time in standard definition, now costs £6.99 per month.
The Standard plan is priced at £10.99 per month and offers HD viewing, two simultaneous streams and two devices to register for downloads.
The cost of the Premium plan has gone up by £2 and now costs £15.99 per month. This package allows subscribers to stream on four screens at the same time in HD and Ultra HD.
Netflix said the price hike would allow it to "continue investing in best in class UK productions" and "offer a wide variety of curated quality shows and films".
How do I cancel Netflix?
Netflix members who are not happy with the prices can cancel their subscription. This can be done at any time and you will not be charged any additional fees for leaving.
To cancel, simply login to your Netflix account and select ‘cancel membership’ under the ‘membership and billing’ section from the drop down menu in the right hand corner of the homepage, under ‘account’. Then select ‘finish cancellation’ to confirm.
If you cancel within your billing period, you will be able to continue using the streaming service until it comes to an end.
It is also possible to switch to a cheaper subscription package by logging into your account on the Netflix website.