Netflix has just announced new plan options and new prices for their services on the Netflix Blog. They are splitting the unlimited DVD by mail and unlimited streaming services into their own separate programs. If you only want one service or the other, the price will start at $7.99/month but if you want the same level of service you were just getting, it will now start at $15.98/month. Coming quickly on the heels of the price increase last November, this is a departure from the previous pricing model of $2.00/month add on cost for the additional service. If you wish to have BluRay movies or more than 1 DVD at a time, your monthly cost will also increase.
If you are only interested in DVDs, you can head over to https://dvd.netflix.com, where it now says “Does not include unlimited streaming”. The main website, www.netflix.com, is now the home of Instant Streaming only.
If you go to the DVD site and want to get to the Streaming site, you’ll need to click on the “Does not include unlimited streaming” link to receive the popup layer seen below. You can then click the “I want to stream instantly and receive DVDs from Netflix” to access the main website.
For new members, the price changes are effective immediately while existing members will see the new pricing will take effect after September 1, 2011.
The good news for former members like myself is that Netflix is hoping to continue the DVD-by-mail program as a long-term part of the business. For a while now, it has seemed like Netflix was scalping the DVD market to afford the licenses for instant streaming while not getting enough copies of DVDs for new releases or not replacing broken DVDs.
Reflecting our confidence that DVDs by mail is a long-term business for us, we are also establishing a separate and distinct management team solely focused on DVDs by mail, led by Andy Rendich, our Chief Service and Operations Officer and an 11 year veteran of Netflix.
Now DVDs might get the attention they need and the separate budget line but will the increased cost of both drive more customers away? The comments on today’s Netflix blog post seem to say so. Will the additional revenue allow them to afford more licenses for streaming content? People have options with Amazon’s Instant Video for streaming and Redbox/local stores for DVDs, are the alternatives looking better again?
We’re making a couple of changes based on your feedback:
- The horizontal scrolling functionality that was jittery for some should be reduced now that we’ve disabled scrolling to the left until you’ve first scrolled to the right.
- We’re bringing sortable lists back. You’ll see them return later this month.