Netflix crackdown on password sharing begins in the UAE

Accounts are only for those who live together in one household, says streaming platform

The company began testing its 'paid-sharing' feature in March last year. Photo: Thibault Penin / Unsplash
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Sharing a Netflix password is coming to an end in the UAE.

Following the streaming service's shareholder letter and earnings call on Wednesday the company is addressing password sharing in remaining countries around the world, rolling it out widely in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

According to the streaming service's FAQ section, the accounts are "meant to be shared by people who live together in one household".

It adds: "People who are not in your household will need to sign up for their own account to watch Netflix."

At the time of writing, users in the UAE had not received an email informing them of the crackdown. However, users outside of the account holder's home will be notified of the change when using the service, but will not be blocked without any notice.

On Wednesday, it was announced that, following the initial restraint on sharing, Netflix saw its subscriptions climb by almost six million users.

In March last year, the company began testing its “paid-sharing” feature with subscribers in Chile, Costa Rica and Peru. This year, the restrictions have been extended in stages to Canada, New Zealand, Portugal, Spain, the US and the UK.

In an email sent to subscribers globally, the company offered alternatives to those wishing to share their accounts with others outside their households. Users can either transfer their profiles to another account or buy an extra member for their account.

The cost of adding an extra member is $7.99 in the US and £4.99 in the UK, both of which are cheaper than a basic ad-free subscription. This option will not be offered in the UAE or remaining countries where the crackdown is being rolled out.

Netflix's earnings interview, released on Wednesday, reads: "In May, we successfully launched paid sharing in 100-plus countries, representing more than 80 per cent of our revenue base ... Paid net additions were 5.9 million in [the second quarter of the year], and today we’re rolling out paid sharing to almost all of the remaining countries."

Updated: July 20, 2023, 11:54 AM