The Price to Netflix and Chill Has Never Been So High

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The cost of Bird Box has come home to roost for Netflix users. The streaming giant’s heavy investment (at least $8 billion last year) in new content like the Sandra Bullock meme-maker has trickled its way down to the consumer.

Netflix has announced a price increase of $1 to $2 across the board which will take effect over the next few months. New members will be charged the new price immediately. The most basic plan will now be $8.99 per month, up from $7.99, while its Standard plan with HD quality will increase from $10.99 to $12.99. Its Premium plan will rise to $15.99 from $13.99.

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This increase isn’t exactly a price gouge but it’s a couple Starbucks Ventis away from their original streaming plan which was (take a deep breath) a free add-on service for the DVD subscription when it was first offered in 2007.

Four years later, the modern form of unlimited Netflix streaming was introduced for $7.99 per month in 2011. That’s basically a $5 increase (for the most popular HD plan) in eight years, which isn’t such bad deal when you consider all the content Netflix has pumped out. Sure, most of it is junk food entertainment, but it’s gaining praise with critics (Alfonso Cuaron’s Roma is a strong Oscar contender) and drawing huge audiences (Bird Box has more than 45 million views so far).

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While Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has said that their greatest enemy is “sleep,” the streaming giant clearly is arming up for a battle in the ongoing streaming wars that will have even more conglomerates joining the fray in 2019. Disney, AT&T, and Apple will soon join HBO, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and others in the fight for our eyeballs.

The Netflix price hike now puts it up there with the vaunted HBO Now (costs a flat rate of $15 per month) and distances itself from Hulu (starts at $7.99) and Amazon Prime Video ($8.99).

Since we all know that the Netflix pricing will never go down, how much would be too much before you cancel your subscription? Or could you never live without Marie Kondo showing and telling you how to clean out your closet? Leave your comments below.