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Netflix loses subscribers for the first time in over a decade, now considering cheaper ad-supported plans

By Kenny Yeo - on 24 Apr 2022, 11:18am

Netflix loses subscribers for the first time in over a decade, now considering cheaper ad-supported plans

Note: This article was first published on 20 April 2022.

(Image source: Netflix)

Netflix has just announced that it has lost subscribers. It's the first time that has happened in over a decade.

According to Netflix, it lost 200,000 subscribers globally compared to Q4. Worryingly, the company is forecasting bigger losses in the future. It said that it could lose as many as two million subscribers in the second quarter. 

The silver lining is that the company still ended the quarter with about 222 million subscribers and held on to the top spot as the world's largest video streaming service.

The company acknowledge that the pandemic "clouded the picture" and led to the company experiencing unusual growth. 

And earlier this year, the company announced price hikes – its first in over two years. Netflix estimated that it lost around 600,000 customers in the US and Canada as a result of this. Even so, it maintained that this was "tracking in line with our expectations."

The company plans to tackle this in two ways. The first is to stop users from sharing accounts. Netflix estimates that as many as 100 million households are logging on with shared accounts. That's a lot of money left on the table.

And after years of rejecting calls for cheaper ad-supported plans, its co-CEO Reed Hastings now says the company is "quite open to offering even lower prices with advertising."

He said that such plans would make "a lot of sense" especially for "consumers who would like to have a lower price and are advertising tolerant."

Netflix faces stiff competition in the video streaming space especially now that giants Disney and Warner Bros. have jumped on board. Apple, with its deep pockets, is also a thorn in the flesh, even if its subscriber numbers are nowhere near Netflix's.

Netflix's stock plunged over 20% after these announcements. 

Source: NetflixThe Verge

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