Is Netflix going to change its rules on password sharing?

Password sharing for online streaming services is extremely common. In fact, according to a study, 35% of millennials share their passwords for streaming platforms, as do just under 20% of Generation X and 13% of Baby Boomers.

However, it has recently been reported that Netflix might be looking to limit how often subscribers can share their passwords with family and friends. So, what will the new rules be? And how will they affect Netflix users? Here’s everything you need to know:

What are the current rules? 

At the moment, Netflix allows up to five individual profiles on each account. Each profile will be tailored to that individual, showing personalised recommendations, playback settings, and different maturity levels if necessary.

In addition, it offers three different subscription plans: basic, standard and premium. The number of devices that can stream simultaneously will depend on which plan you use, with basic allowing one device at a time, standard allows two, and premium allowing up to four devices at the same time.

However, despite the rules on how many profiles you can use on each account being very clear, the rules on how many people can use the streaming platform with the same password isn’t, meaning that many users will share their password with lots of people.

Under the current rules, users can give their password to as many people as they like and, as long as they don’t all log in at the same time, they can all get full access to the account. But, according to Netflix, this loophole could change in the near future.

Could the rules change? 

In an interview about Netflix’s profits in 2019, chief product officer Greg Peters was asked about the current password sharing situation, and how the company plans to deal with it without “alienating a certain portion of its user base”.

He responded:  “We’re looking at the situation. We’ll see those consumer-friendly ways to push on the edges of that.” He also noted, however, that at the moment the firm doesn’t have any “big plans” to announce on this topic.

There is one theory, though, that Netflix could, in the future, clamp down on password sharing by enforcing rules regarding the IP addresses of its customers. This would identify devices that are using the same computer network and those that aren’t

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