Netflix has been working on an ad-supported subscription tier for some time. The threat of it has been hovering around and comes as the company’s own answer to similar services doing the same.
Paramount+ launched a more affordable ad-supported tier last year. following companies like HULU that had already adventured into the area. One by one, it seems that the competition is following suit and now Netflix is adding its name to that list.
The new tier will run users $6.99/month, allowing for a more affordable Netflix experience. Similar to some of the alternative options being offered by the competition. With this, users will experience around 5 minutes worth of ads for every hour they spend watching the service. Ads will be delivered in a style similar to YouTube, running around 15-30 seconds each. From the start of an episode or movie, and then throughout.
Of course, its success will depend on how many people are willing to watch these ads. Five minutes of ads may not be as bad as options like cable TV, but this is always where it starts. Eventually, 5 minutes becomes 10-15 minutes and it’s just as annoying.
Typically, the whole point of paying for content is to get away from ads. People forget that this was the start of cable TV. The promise of content without having to watch any ads. Until they slowly get people used to it by slowly injecting ads, while users pay the same or more over time.
Then again, Netflix wouldn’t be doing this if it didn’t think it was successful on other platforms. Companies are going to jump on it if people are willing to pay for it.
However, this isn’t the only limitation users will face. Video quality will be limited to 720p. Because dumbing visuals back to 2005 is apparently a thing. There will also be certain movies and TV shows that these users won’t have access to due to “licensing issues”, and users won’t be able to download anything for offline use. Honestly, nothing about this account tier sounds interesting.
The new ad tier will become available as of November 3rd. Marking the first day you will be able to completely ignore this and move along as if the option didn’t even exist.