After a drop in subscribers for the first time in its history, Netflix recently announced a lower-cost, ad-supported package. With this, Netflix content would include advertising from sponsors, which would subsidise the lower cost of entry. It is now scheduled for global release in November.

While it has had critics, the Netflix ad-supported plan does have several advantages. Read on as we discuss why Netflix’s ad-supported program could be worth it.

Quality Content

Netflix has announced that not all content will be available. This is a minimal amount with around five to ten per cent of the programming not available, which they are working to rectify. It is also doubtful that the major shows that attract people to the platform would be excluded.

Their most recent smash hit has been Stranger Things. This has turned into a global merchandise phenomenon, piggybacking on a wave of eighties nostalgia. Along with foreign headline makers like Squid Games, it would seem counterproductive for Netflix not to include this lucrative content, especially at a time when rivals are producing some attractive content.

Disney+ has a huge back catalogue, and franchises such as Marvel and Star Wars on its books. Meanwhile, HBO has recently released House of the Dragon, their latest blockbuster series to drive people towards signing up. Following on from Game of Thrones, it is a prequel to the eight-season fantasy epic. Based on a series of popular fantasy books, viewers have become invested in the sprawling family trees of the various houses. Few shows have the fanatical and loyal fanbase it has.

Whole forums on social media and Reddit are dedicated to the many conspiracy theories surrounding characters. ExpressVPN has dissected the Targaryen family tree for anyone who is struggling after the long gap between the new series and Game of Thrones. Those going straight into House of the Dragon may find it useful as well. With these offerings, Netflix must be included its flagship content.

Low Pricing

Netflix has launched its ad-supported tier at the right time. Household budgets are being squeezed, particularly in many of their UK and European target markets. This could push many towards the lower-cost alternative.

In the US, the service will cost $6.99 a month. A standard plan is $10 a month, which does not seem like a big saving. Crucially it is $1 less than the Disney+ service, which will roll out next year at $7.99. Again, this saving may not be much but the psychological impact on consumers should have an effect.

Ads May Not Be as Intrusive as They Seem

Companies are wise to the ways of marketing and understand that interrupting movies and shows with ads can often have the opposite impact on brand awareness. Therefore, it seems that Netflix has considered this carefully when placing its ads.

For each hour of content, you will view around five minutes of advertising. These will consist of ads with a running time between 15 and 30 minutes. Netflix has specified that many new movies will only feature ads at the beginning and end, so the experience of the movie is not ruined.

It is also worth noting that the basic plan and the supported plan will feature 720p HD video. This is an addition to the basic plan that was not available before. Therefore, with new movies, you will still be able to get a robust cinema experience. It will not be possible to download shows to your device, but for most people who watch at home, this will probably not be a concern.

Netflix built its service on getting rid of ads and undercutting its cable competition such as Xfinity and Verizon. It seems they have now gone full circle and while many detractors say this is no different from television, Netflix’s new tier may just be worth your time.

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    Chris has been at the forefront of smartphone reporting in Australia since smartphones were a thing, and has used mobile phones since they came with giant lead-acid batteries that were "transportable" and were carried in a shoulder bag. Today, Chris publishes one of Australia's most popular technology websites, Ausdroid. His interests include mobile (of course), as well as connected technology and how it can make all our lives easier.