Netflix price changes and you’re paying TOO much? How to cut your bills

NETFLIX has a habit of increasing its prices every few years as it struggles to keep up with rivals Amazon and Disney.

That’s what the US streaming giant argues squeezing consumers helps him pay for new TV shows and movies while subscribers lament the mounting strain on their wallets.

Netflix has increased its prices several times over the years


Netflix has increased its prices several times over the yearsCredit: Alamy

Netflix payment plans explained

Netflix has three price tiers in the US and UK, with higher prices offering better picture quality and additional screens to watch.

The Basic plan offers standard definition content. That means no HD or 4K streaming, which isn’t great if you have a larger TV.

As part of the base pricing, you can only watch Netflix on one screen at a time.

That means one member of your household can’t watch TV on their phone while you’re watching something else on your TV.

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If you are willing to pay a little more NetflixWith the standard plan, you can watch content in HD quality – but not in 4K.

Standard tier subscribers can also use the app on up to two screens at a time.

The most expensive tier, Premium, offers even more.

If you pay for it, you can watch on up to four screens at the same time and get access to the platform’s 4K content at the same time.


When did Netflix raise prices?

Netflix has increased its prices several times over the years.

The first increase in May 2014 brought Basic to £5.99/$8, while Standard was £7.49/$9 and Premium was £8.99/$12.

Prices were frozen for two years, but rose again in October 2017 as competition from companies like Amazon Prime stepped up a notch.

Basic stayed the same at £5.99/$8, while Standard and Premium rose to £7.99/$10.99 and £9.99/$13.99, respectively.

Netflix said at the time that the price change reflected the additional content being added to its service.

Fast forward to 2022 and Netflix prices in the US and UK are back up.

After raising subscription fees twice in 12 months, the country’s current state makes for grim reading.

Basic is now £6.99/$9.99, while Standard is £10.99/$15.49 and Premium will set you back a whopping £15.99/$19.99 per month.

Are you paying too much?

Millions of Netflix lovers who pay the highest price for the best package may be wasting money on quality they can’t even get.

The streaming platform’s most expensive premium subscription is the only way to get superior 4K.

But those who think they’re getting impressive cinematic results, think again.

Especially if you’re watching from a PC, you might be short-circuited with 720p quality instead.

That’s because there are some strict standards for everything above it, meaning poor gear and software could hold you back.

How to Check 4K on Netflix

The best way to determine if you can actually receive 4K is to do a test.

Netflix offers a number of test patterns, just search “test patterns”.

Play one and see if it says “3840 x 2160” in the top right corner.

If you see that then you’re fine, but anything below that means you’re not getting the full 4K experience.

What you need to watch 4K on Netflix

Make sure you’re actually subscribed to Netflix’s premium plan, as that’s the only plan that allows you to watch 4K movies and shows.

And of course, remember that not everything is available in 4K – so make sure the description actually says Ultra HD.

You also need to set the streaming quality to Auto or High.

On the technical side, your monitor needs to be a 60Hz 4K display that supports HDCP 2.2.

For Windows, the integrated graphics must be a 7th Gen Intel Core or newer CPU, or an AMD Ryzen CPU.

And on the dedicated graphics front, it has to be an AMD RX 400 or newer, or one of Nvidia’s GPUs.

In addition, a so-called HEVC codec must be installed.

If you don’t already have this – some PCs come with it – you’ll have to pay to get it from the Microsoft store.

In terms of internet connection, nothing below 25 megabits per second will do.

But crucially, you need the right web browser or app, as we explain below.

Which browser to use for 4K on Netflix?

If you use Google Chrome to watch Netflix on your PC and think you’re getting gorgeous 4K, you’ll be sorely disappointed.

4K Netflix does not work in Chrome, nor does it work in most major web browsers.

On Windows, you have two options – either watch through the Microsoft Edge web browser or download the official version Netflix app for Windows 10.

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