New streaming services are coming from Disney, WarnerMedia, and NBCUniversal in the near future - but it would appear that Netflix won't be backing down. Even at the higher price, that plan is still a few dollars cheaper than HBO, whose streaming service charges $15 per month. Finally, the premium plan offers UHD streaming when available and streaming on up to four devices at the same time, and its price is growing from $14 per month to $16. In short, prices are increasing just as Netflix is becoming both more prestigious and more "essential" than ever. The new prices only affect plans using US dollars and are already in effect for potential new subscribers. Existing customers will reportedly see their bills increase during the next three months. (New subscribers will begin at the higher price point starting immediately.) It's the fourth time the company has raised its prices, and the largest increase overall since Netflix began its streaming service in 2007.
Netflix shares rose six percent in morning trade on the news.
According to the AP, Netflix boasted almost 79 million subscribers outside the U.S.as of September. The company's stock soared in response to the price increase news.
However, the company has been burning through cash - as much as $3bn in 2018 - to contain threats from Amazon, Disney and Apple, all new entrants to the streaming business that have promised significant investments in original content.
Netflix's ability to increase prices while maintaining its 150m-strong audience is seen as a key factor in justifying the company's $150bn valuation.
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Wall Street responded well to the announcement.
That was also underscored by the company's strong showing at the Golden Globes, where it won five awards, more than any other network or studio.
Greg Peters, the company's chief product officer, said on Netflix's quarterly investor interview last October that "we earn the right to increase price a bit" if the company keeps delivering on customer expectations.
Netflix (NFLX) stock spiked 6% at market open.