Three Netflix plans are available in Poland: Basic (PLN 29 per month, SD quality, one screen), Standard (PLN 43, HD, two screens) and Premium (PLN 60, 4K, four screens). Subscriptions can be purchased from competing platforms that offer Ultra HD content at a lower price. For example, HBO Max costs 29.99 PLN per month, and Disney + 28.99 PLN.
In the case of Amazon Prime Video, the annual subscription costs 49 PLN. Although SkyShowtime doesn’t offer a 4K show yet, it costs PLN 12.49 in the promotion that runs until the end of March. Later, new subscribers will pay 24.99 PLN, and previous subscribers will pay half of the standard fee.
Recently, Netflix decided to lower subscription prices in 30 countries where, according to Ampere Analytics, it has more than 10 million subscribers. These are: Yemen, Jordan, Libya, Iran, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Venezuela, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, Kenya, Croatia, Bulgaria and Slovenia. Therefore, the changes did not affect the Polish market.
Netflix is far ahead of its competitors
Netflix has been operating in Poland since 2016, which is much longer than any of the players mentioned above. Amazon Prime Video launched in October 2021, HBO GO became available without pay TV packages in March 2018 (became HBO Max four years later), Disney+ in June 2022, and SkyShowtime on February 14, 2023.
Get a feel for the brand and offer a variety program that does their job. The Wavemaker study shows that Netflix reach among VOD subscribers at the end of 2022 was 74 percent. In the case of HBO Max, it’s 24%, Player 21%, Disney+ 20%, and Amazon Prime Video 11%. According to Nielsen, in the first three weeks of January, the platform’s reach on smart TVs alone was 8.93 million (Disney + 2.56 million, HBO Max under 2 million, Amazon Prime Video 1.52 million, Player 1.49 million).
Mediapanel’s January results also show the dominance of Netflix as a website and mobile app. They were visited by 12.9 million Internet users. In the case of Disney+, it was 4.16 million, HBO Max 4.02 million, Player 3.77 million and Amazon Prime Video 2.63 million.
So it might seem that in today’s market reality, offering cheaper packages would be commercial madness.
How does Netflix itself explain its subscription amount? – In an era of dynamic development of the entertainment industry and huge opportunities for access to your favorite content, Netflix is trying to respond to fan expectations more effectively. The service produces new films and series, set in various genres and draw from many cultures, and is also investing heavily in local markets, including Poland. The result of this work was the latest hits: “Glass Onion”, “Stranger Things”, “Wednesday”, “Big Water”, the Oscar-nominated “Same in the West”, “Pinocchio”, “Blondica”, as well as upcoming films. And the upcoming titles: “Berlin”, “Killer Wedding 2”, “Queen Charlotte”, “Luther: Twilight” – tells the press office of Netflix Polska in an interview with Wirtualnemedia.pl.
That the site is distinguished by the highest technical quality, and it is a convenient and optimized application with easy content search and good reception. – We work with the best creators from around the world, as evidenced by the international acclaim from critics and viewers of many of our Netflix titles, as well as the long list of awards given for productions – from the Academy Awards, to Golden Globes, EMMYs, BAFTAs, and more. At the same time, in addition to a wide variety of titles, Netflix boasts one of the largest libraries of Ultra HD productions, offering an unparalleled number of production genres with the best possible viewing experience.
The fight against account sharing is the big test
Until now, the popularity of Netflix on the Vistula has been driven by users sharing their passwords with their family or friends. For example, a 4K plan could consist of 4 people who paid 20 PLN instead of 60 PLN. Nobody watches the streaming service 24/7, so in many cases more people can use a single account.
Currently, the world’s largest streaming platform is introducing new password sharing rules. Currently, they are applying to Canada, New Zealand, Portugal and Spain. In the latter countries, the additional cost of password sharing will be from €3.99 to €5.99, which is the equivalent of 18-28 PLN. The company verifies the location of the farm via IP. Your device will need to connect to your home Wi-Fi at least once every 30 days. The list of countries with new rules may be expanded in March.
The battle against account sharing may end with a decrease in the number of users. There were CDs at Dziesięciolecia Stadium in Warsaw opposite PLN 10 and PLN 90 across from Poniatowski Bridge. This place with records was called Universal. When they cost PLN 80-90, practically no one bought them, and when they began to cost PLN 30, the stadium was closed and no similar point was opened. Polish consumers cannot afford such high prices. They also can’t afford to pay PLN 60 for a Netflix package. Besides, this package is not worth much, says the manager of a large streaming service in an interview with Wirtualnemedia.pl. In his opinion, a price of around PLN 40 with Ultra HD content would be acceptable.
Just a year ago, it looked like Netflix was going to get harder and harder to retain subscribers. In the first quarter of 2022, it recorded a decrease in subscriptions by 0.2 million to reach 221.64 million. In the second quarter of last year, the drop was 970,000 larger. to 220.67 million. At the end of the third quarter of 2022, 223.1 million users were already paying for the platform, In the last months of last year, it gained 7.7 million subscribers, giving the total number of subscribers 230.75 million. Founded by Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph, the company has paved the way for today’s young competitors – Disney+, Prime Video and HBO Max. Being both the leader and the leader, the service can temporarily increase the prices for its services. However, the question is what will happen when Netflix delivers the announced fixes for some time and prevents customers from sharing accounts. Will the people who opted for co-op so far decide to pay the subscription fee on their own? Especially when for the price of a premium Netflix package they’re able to buy yearly access to Amazon or monthly subscriptions to Disney and HBO? So 2023 will be a big test for Netflix. We’ll see the true degree of loyalty to his customers – argues Łukasz Muszyński, deputy editor-in-chief of the Filmweb portal.
Polish production cost is expensive
There is no shortage of voices that hold this habit responsible for the huge popularity of Netflix. – Netflix hasn’t been worth its price for quite some time now. I get the impression that many subscribers stick to this platform out of pure habit. However, the new models that Netflix is proposing or even the tests in individual countries are effectively changing this trend. People are slowly starting to abandon Netflix in favor of other platforms. Raising prices only speeds up the process. The truth is, unfortunately, that the entire market will follow Netflix sooner or later. For now, the competition is watching closely how big the drop will be and whether it will remain profitable. If the tests are successful, the rest will also raise prices – predicts Dawid Muszyński, editor-in-chief of NaEkranie.pl.
Against the backdrop of global services operating in Poland, Netflix features a large number of Polish productions. Within 6 years, the company has already produced more than 30 Polish films and series. At the start of 2022, the next 18 have been announced, and still not all of them have premiered. A few months ago, it was announced that two more films and a series would be made on the Vistula. Only in 2022, Netflix spent PLN 400 million on productions in our country. For comparison, for Disney + only 60 local productions will be produced in all countries in Europe, Africa and the Middle East by 2024.
Netflix is not affiliated with any of the broadcasters in Poland, which means costs are high – they produce very expensive content, which means on the flip side the CFO asks about the return on investment. They produce a lot of local content. If they order 10 or 15 products and overpay for them, the local content should be sent back to Poland. This content does not travel. Let’s not assume “Great Water” will be a hit in America. This is a local story from Poland. The question is how many people will pay for it in Poland, notes the manager of a large streaming service.
A distinctive feature of Netflix is the availability of content from different parts of the world: from Latin America, through Africa, Europe, to the Far East. Although there is no shortage of well-rated products on the platform, its several-year-old user will not always find something to his taste on offer.
The times when Netflix was the best – as the only streaming platform – are long gone. Now it is the most expensive streaming service that is fighting user influx using increasingly harsh methods. And he doesn’t seem to see the problem that not only critics, but casual viewers are beginning to notice, too: There’s nothing to watch on Netflix. Netflix doesn’t care about its brands. Netflix is pointlessly canceling its shows before they have a chance to develop. There is no successful movie series for an adult viewer like “The Last of Us” or “The Mandalorian” and with the current approach to content, I don’t think that can change. – argues Marta Wurzen, editor-in-chief of the Serialowa.pl portal. In her opinion, the current price of a 4K package is absurd.
The Singles 4K package is missing
Netflix recently introduced content with 3D sound to its premium plan. The technology enriches the sound layer without the need for speakers for surround sound. Content from the platform can also be downloaded not to four, but to six devices. This move is intended to make subscribers understand that it is worth paying 60 PLN per month. The problem is that some of them don’t have a large family or multiple roommates to stream on multiple devices at the same time. They only watch on one device.
– Netflix certainly lacks a cheaper plan in its offering, which would give access to movies and series in 4K, and not necessarily allow you to watch content on multiple devices at the same time. Introducing such a plan would allow many viewers who value high standards of picture and sound to stay with the platform at a time when competition in the market becomes very strong. Unfortunately, Netflix doesn’t seem to see the potential of such a move right now, and even when offering a cheaper ad-supported plan in overseas markets, it’s only targeting users who are satisfied with HD quality, notes Mateusz Zakzyk, editor-in-chief of Filmozercy.com.
In his opinion, the introduction of 3D audio is a marketing ploy and the platform should try harder to attract users of the more expensive package. – Introducing 3D audio support for the Premium plan is a step in the right direction, but it’s a very small step, and just one of many that Netflix needs to take if it wants to remain aggressively competitive in the market. Sennheiser’s AMBEO 3D sound technology, which was widely implemented on Netflix in early February, will not be able to replace true surround sound, but contrary to many skeptics, thanks to advanced technology, it can successfully diversify viewers with stereo speakers Impressions during the show Zaczyk argues.
Many Premium users may already have more advanced audio hardware. For holders of cheaper plans, quality is not so important. With them in mind, the platform should, following the example of the USA and other developed markets, offer a cheap package with ads, but so far there are no such plans for the Polish market.
The advertising industry expects such a plan to emerge in 2023.
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