Longtime Netflix customers may be in for a rude awakening in 2016, when the streaming giant updates all member subscriptions to the current pricing structure. In May 2014, Netflix customers were informed that the monthly fee for the Standard streaming plan was set to increase from $8 to $9. Established customers were to be allowed to continue paying the $8 fee for two years, at which point Netflix would update all Standard subscriptions to the current rate. In October of 2015, Netflix again bumped their Standard streaming subscription up by a dollar, to $10.
Two years have passed, and 2016 is the year of reckoning for those who’ve been dreading Netflix’s impending price increase. Anyone who has had a Standard plan for more than two years saw their monthly fee jump to $10 on May 9. More recent subscribers — those who began their Netflix plan after May 2014 — have until October before their plan is bumped up. Fortunately, Netflix hasn’t announced any proposals to alter its monthly subscription fees for the other available plans.
Below, we’ve outlined each pricing plan so you’ll know exactly what you’re getting and if those extra add-ons are worth the added cost to you. After all, while it might only be a $4 leap from the basic plan to the premium, perhaps you’d rather save your cabbage for Hulu’s Showtime add-on or a premium slice of ‘za. The choice is yours.
Netflix has three different plans when it comes to streaming: basic, standard, and premium. Plans start at $8 and increase incrementally by $2, rendering the standard and premium plans $10 and $12, respectively. Below is a breakdown of what each plan entails, with the added features.
|Plan||Price||Number of screens||Resolution|
|Premium (streaming)||$12||4||HD + Ultra HD|
The folks at Netflix certainly pride themselves on their streaming plans, but that doesn’t mean the service ditched discs altogether. The company still offers DVD and Blu-ray plans — none of which include streaming access — beginning at $5 and going up from there. The monthly cost just depends on how many discs you have check out at a time, or how many you want per month.
|Plan||DVD Price||Blu-ray Price
||Number of discs out at a time|
|Limited||$5||$6||Two (per month)|
What is simultaneous viewing — streaming only
This is a huge perk for Netflix streaming customers who want to share their Netflix account with roommates, friends, or family. The basic Netflix plan allows you to stream content on only one screen at a time, though the number of screens on which you can simultaneously stream content increases with each plan upgrade. Ergo, if you opt for the standard plan, you use the same account to watch content on two different devices at once, or four different devices at the same time with the premium plan. That said, the number of devices and people you want to share your account with will likely influence which plan you pick.
What is HD and Ultra HD — streaming only
Even if you never plan on sharing your Netflix account or watching on two screens at the same time, opting for the standard or premium plan is likely worth it considering it enables HD streaming. The basic plan doesn’t offer high-definition content, and unless your internet speed is too slow to handle HD streaming, the quality difference between the two resolutions is enough to make the $2 leap worth it. However, Netflix offers more than just HD content.
If you’ve shelled out the bucks to buy a 4K TV or monitor, you might as well spend a few extra dollars for a premium account. Doing so will grant you access to Ultra HD content — such as NBC’s The Blacklist and the lauded Breaking Bad — allowing you to watch shows and films at a resolution considered to be four times that of 1080p (HD). Just type “UHD” or “4K” into the search bar in Netflix to find the high-resolution programming.