Cop ads or pay more: Netflix begins to phase out Basic plan

A screenshot of Geralt of Rivia from The Witcher TV show
Pictured: Henry Cavill in The Witcher
// Canadian customers are getting a little less Basic
Fergus Halliday
Jun 27, 2023
Icon Time To Read1 min read

Published on June 26, 2023

Netflix may be gearing up to downsize its roster of streaming plans.

As of this week, new Netflix customers in Canada are no longer be able to sign up for the Basic plan. Once a mid-step between the Basic with Ads and Standard, this particular plan is no longer an option.

Existing subscribers on the Basic tier aren't being kicked off the plan yet, but those on other tier ones will lose the ability to swap to the second cheapest Netflix plan in the near future according to one report by The Winnipeg Free Press.

That same report indicated that subscribers currently paying for Basic Netflix subscriptions will be grandfathered into that plan until they cancel or change their plan.

Netflix has yet to comment or disclose whether a similar phasing out of the Basic plan is likely to happen in other territories. However, Canada was one of the first countries targeted when the streamer began its recent crackdown on password sharing and it didn't long for Aussies to meet the same measures.

If Netflix does cut the Basic plan in Australia, expect the local lineup and Netflix pricing to look like the following.

Basic with Ads
Standard
Premium

Price

$6.99

$16.99

$22.99

Resolution

SD

HD

Up to 4K

No. of simultaneous streams

1

2

4

No. of offline download devices

Zero

2

4

As for why Netflix might do this, your best guess is probably the right answer.

During its most recent letter to shareholders, Netflix emphasised the need for greater monetisation in order to boost revenue growth for the company.

By removing the Basic tier, Netflix can put pressure on new and old subscribers who really don't want to deal with ads to pay just that little bit more and shell out for the Standard plan. Those who opt for the alternative bolster the value of the company's foray into advertising by increasing the volume of customers it can show advertising to.

If one of its recent price-hikes or the possibility of Netflix phasing out the Basic plan has you ready to hit the button that lets you quit, there are plenty of other streaming options out there. Check out the table below for a quick comparison of Australian streaming services.

Service
Details
Monthly price
More info
Binge LogoBinge Standard plan
4K streaming
2 streams
Deal: 7-day free trial
$18/mth
Apple TV+Apple TV+ plan
4K streaming
6 streams (Family Sharing)
Deal: 7-day free trial
$12.99/mth
Disney PlusDisney+ Standard plan
HD streaming
2 streams
Deal: $139.99 for 12mths
$13.99/mth
Disney PlusDisney+ Premium plan
4K streaming
4 streams
Deal: $179.99 for 12mths
$17.99/mth
NetflixNetflix Standard + Ads
HD streaming
2 streams
$7.99/mth
StanStan Basic plan
SD streaming
1 stream
$12/mth
Kayo SportsKayo One Plan
HD streaming
1 stream
Deal: 7-day free trial
$25/mth
Fergus Halliday
Written by
Fergus Halliday is a journalist and editor for Reviews.org. He’s written about technology, telecommunications, gaming and more for over a decade. He got his start writing in high school and began his full-time career as the Editor of PC World Australia. Fergus has made the MCV 30 Under 30 list, been a finalist for seven categories at the IT Journalism Awards and won Most Controversial Writer at the 2022 Consensus Awards. He has been published in Gizmodo, Kotaku, GamesHub, Press Start, Screen Rant, Superjump, Nestegg and more.

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