Wednesday 20 June 2018

Netflix set to hike prices for third time in 18 months

Adrian Weckler

Adrian Weckler

Netflix will increase its monthly subscription fees by up to 43pc in Ireland as it raises prices for a third time in only 18 months.

The streaming giant, which is estimated to have more than 200,000 paying subscribers in Ireland, is making its move in order to earn more money to invest in TV programmes and films.

The latest price rise sees new subscriptions bumped from €9 a month to €10 per month.

But Netflix says that current users, who pay between €7 and €9 a month, depending on when they joined, will also start to see their bills rise to €10 from next May.

The price rises are based on Netflix's standard offering of high-definition picture quality and two simultaneous screens.

An entry-level tariff, which is based on a single device's usage and a non-HD stream quality, remains in place at €8 a month.

A spokeswoman for Netflix said the company was rolling out an "unprecedented" number of original television and film projects.

Hit programmes such as Orange Is The New Black and House Of Cards are expected to be backed up by more than 50 additional Netflix-made shows to be released on the streaming platform this year.

The spokeswoman said that these would include documentaries and children's programmes such as its Project MC Squared series, aimed at getting girls more interested in maths and science.

Netflix is increasingly seen as a mainstream rival to Sky and UPC, with two-thirds of Irish homes now connected to broadband that can deliver the service alongside free terrestrial television services.

Earlier this year, UPC raised the price of some television packages by 10pc to meet "operational costs and revised content and copyright charges from channel and content providers".

Most analysts expect the current price rises to have little impact on Netflix customer numbers.

How rise affects customers

Existing €7 subscribers (those who subscribed before January 2014): no price rise until May 2016, when it goes up to €10 per month for the same service.

Existing €8 subscribers (those who subscribed between January and May 9, 2014): no increase until between May and August 2016, when it rises to €10 per month for the same service.

Existing €9 subscribers (those who subscribed between May 2014 and August 2015): no rise until August 2016, when it goes up to €10 per month for the same service.

Lapsed subscribers: if you recently cancelled your subscription but are still registered, you will have to pay the new, higher €10 tariff rates on restarting your monthly payments.

Irish Independent

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