Netflix to discontinue ad-free basic subscription by the end of this year

Netflix is ​​making further changes to its subscription service, with plans to completely phase out its cheapest basic ad-free option. The streaming giant announced the news in a letter to shareholders on Tuesday, saying it would launch in the UK and Canada in the second quarter. After increasing prices for existing subscribers from $10 to $12 per month, Netflix is ​​permanently discontinuing plans for all members.

The company discontinued its ad-free basic plan for new subscribers in the U.S. and U.K. in July 2023, then raised prices for those who started a subscription last October. For existing customers around the world, the price has been increased to $12 per month.

New changes this year will allow subscribers to choose from three plans: Basic with ads ($7 per month), Standard without ads ($15.50 per month), and Premium ($23 per month). If you wish to share your account with someone outside of your household, there is an optional additional member fee of $8 per month. Netflix's ad-based plan is one of the most popular and cheaper than rivals Disney Plus and Hulu, but keep in mind that not all titles can be streamed on this plan. You will need to upgrade to access certain TV shows and blockbuster movies.

The streaming service cited its entertainment value and highlighted its expanding lineup of video games and live sports programming. After testing the realm of live streaming with comedy specials and golf tournaments, Netflix is ​​moving deeper into live sports. A tennis match between Rafael Nadal and Carlos Alcaraz will be streamed this March, and the media giant just signed a deal with WWE. Starting in January 2025, wrestling fans in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, and Latin America will be able to watch his Monday Night Raw matches live on the platform, with additional regions to come. Netflix will also be a destination for overseas subscribers who want to watch SmackDown, WrestleMania, and other popular WWE content.

Be sure to check out our coverage of games on Netflix and what ad-based subscriptions have to offer across the streaming world.

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