Netflix, the stop to the shared password looms: what will change

Elizabeth Smith

From early rumors a few months ago to hints to actual confirmations: Netflix is preparing its users for the end of the era of the shared password.

For the moment, the news concerns the U.S. market but, as is easy to guess, soon password sharing will be a distant memory in Europe, as well as in the rest of the world.

In the United States, in fact, subscribers will receive a special code via smartphone to activate Netflix and, therefore, to bind the subscription to that device.

A novelty that, as it is easy to understand, has not been particularly appreciated by consumers.

Netflix, stop shared password: how will the use of the platform change?

The legal streaming platform par excellence has in the end moved. Indeed, for a long time, sharing an account even outside the household has indisposed Netflix.

On the other hand, the practice, while legal, was going to erode a good chunk of the company’s revenue. While it is now a well-established fact that passwords will no longer be shareable, doubt remains about the new method of account management.

Beyond two-factor authentication, which would limit the “reach” of an account to a familiar context, there are other potential innovations related to these mechanics.

Many, for example, hint at the possibility of offering specific subscriptions, which would still allow sharing (albeit at a higher cost). According to others, however, Netflix could still prove to be softer, still allowing password sharing with another user.

For sure, it is not an easy choice for the platform: in fact, acting on password locking certainly does not have a good impact on the company’s image.

Not only that: users are uniting in protest over this limitation and, all of this, could lead to a substantial hemorrhage of users. Which, moreover, has already occurred in the US.

The future of Netflix

Determining the platform’s future policies, however, are other factors as well. The potential acquisition by Microsoft, in this case, may weigh heavily.

Not only that, it should be kept in mind that Netflix has already shown interest with respect to other areas of entertainment, going beyond content such as current TV series, movies, and documentaries.

In this sense, there is increasing talk of the gaming sphere. So, tying the account more closely to a single person, could hint at the appearance, in an unspecified future, of a Netflix with gaming proposition.

Adding up the just-mentioned incorporation by Microsoft, which is already operating extensively in the sector, this opportunity appears anything but far-fetched.

Such a bold move as stopping shared passwords on the other hand is really hard for subscribers to swallow. To succeed in winning back the hearts of users then, proposing a broader formula might be a rather apt choice.

Read also: Netflix will charge those who share the account: the “Transfer profile” feature is coming

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