Netflix Scraps iTunes Payments for Longtime Subscribers

Customers must switch to paying the streamer directly or get cut off; some say the change comes with hefty price hike

Many analysts cut their price targets on the streamer's stock as they await updates on the initiatives’ progress. (Christopher Smith/TheWrap)

Netflix subscribers who paid for the streaming service via iTunes must shift to paying the company directly or get cut off.

The Verge on Tuesday reported that the leading streamer started tossing longtime subscribers off their Apple iTunes billing plans. Instead, they will have to provide their credit card or debit card details directly to Netflix.

All “members on the basic plan who were using an iTunes method of payment” will have to make the shift, Netflix representative Momo Zhao told the outlet.

Netflix did not immediately respond to a request for more specifics.

At least some longtime subscribers said on social media the change will come with a price hike, because they were still paying $9.99 a month on iTunes.

Premium plans on Netflix are now $22.99 a month. Basic plans, which are a holdover from earlier days of streaming, jumped to $11.99 a month in October, but are no longer available for new subscribers. Standard plans with ads are still $6.99 a month, or $15.49 without ads.

Netflix dropped in-app subscriptions for iOS customers in 2018, The Verge noted, after it decided it didn’t want to pay Apple its 30% cut, but it did not boot the customers who had signed up for the plans until now.

Netflix added 13.1 million subscribers in the last three months of 2023 to end the year with 260.28 million. Despite increased competition from Disney+, Max and a host of other streamers, it remains the dominant streaming service. In the last half of 2023, hits like “Reptile” “Heart of Stone,” “Leave the World Behind,” “The Killer,” “The Out-Laws” and “Virgin River” Season 5 helped it stay in the top slot.

In morning trading, Netflix shares added $11.78, or 2%, to $599.39. The stock is up 25% since the start of the year.


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