When it comes to streaming content, Netflix is likely the most well-known such service around the world; with many of us binge-watching our favorite shows in one fell swoop. It seems that there could be some unwelcome news for subscribers in the foreseeable future though, with Netflix having been spotted testing out a new tier under the ‘Ultra’ moniker that could both cost more as well as reducing the number of screens in the ‘Premium’ subscription.
According to TuttoAndroid, Netflix subscribers in Italy have reported the addition of the new ‘Ultra’ tier which costs €16.99, which translates to around $19.80. This is where things get a little murky because different subscribers are seeing different things. According to one group, the ‘Ultra’ tier is the same as the ‘Premium’ tier, but with the addition of HDR support and higher cost. Another group has noticed that the Premium tier has also been reduced from four to two screens, working as a further incentive for subscribers to upgrade to the new ‘Ultra’ tier.
Netflix spokesperson, Smita Saran, gave the following statement to CNET about the testing of the new tier:
“We continuously test new things at Netflix and these tests typically vary in length of time. In this case, we are testing slightly different price points and features to better understand how consumers value Netflix.”
Translation from press jargon:
“We are seeing how many suckers continue to pay for the Premium subscription with fewer displays in comparison to how many will pay more for a single added feature, in this case HDR.”
This won’t be welcome news to current Netflix subscribers after the price hike in late 2017 that saw the Premium tier become $2 more expensive. It’s unknown at this point whether current Premium subscribers will be ‘grandfathered’ into the Ultra tier when it is inevitably announced. I know one thing, I sure wouldn’t be happy if Netflix saw fit to cut the number of screens on my Premium subscription to force me to pay more for the new tier. Would you?