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Netflix might finally start limiting password sharing

Published Oct 21st, 2019 10:58AM EDT
Netflix Password Sharing
Image: Keystone-SDA/Shutterstock

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As long as you have a working Netflix login, you should have no problem streaming movies and TV series even if you’re not technically paying for it. Netflix has always been aware of password sharing and has never seemed to mind. In fact, the company has gone as far as to encourage password sharing in the past. But Netflix might crack down on sharing Netflix credentials in the future. There’s no reason to panic for the time being, as Netflix didn’t announce any new measures to prevent account sharing, and the company is looking at “consumer-friendly” ways to address the issue.

Netflix tackled the matter during its third-quarter earnings call, MobileSyrup notes, when Guggenheim Securities analyst Michael Morris asked about password sharing (see video below).

Netflix CFO Spencer Neumann said the company is continuing to monitor it for now. “We’re looking at the situation, and we’ll [look for] those consumer-friendly ways to push on the edges of that.” The exec added that Netflix has “no big plans to announce at this time in terms of doing something different” with password sharing for the time being.

Whether you lend your password to your friends or you’re borrowing someone else’s credentials to binge the latest Netflix hit, you don’t have to worry about Netflix taking any action. Netflix’s current plans support from one to four simultaneous streams, depending on how much you’re willing to pay each month. But you can share your password with as many people you want as long as they’re not all watching at the same time.

With massive competition coming this fall from Disney+ and at least a tiny bit of competition from Apple TV+, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Netflix try to limit password sharing in the future and look to convert more people to paying subscribers. On the other hand, any action against people who share their logins will obviously face some backlash.

Disney+ and Apple TV+ both come with lower prices and extended access. Disney+ is much cheaper than Netflix and will offer simultaneous streams at 4K resolution — four concurrent streams for any account for as low as $6.99 per month, and up to seven profiles per account. Apple TV+, meanwhile, will be free for a year for anyone buying new Apple gear, and it comes with family sharing support for up to six people.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.