Netflix experimenting with price hike for subscribers

NETFLIX is playing around with the price it charges subscribers in a bid to better understand what we'll pay for our favourite shows.

The streaming giant is currently conducting a clandestine test among selected users to see how they react to a temporary hike in the price they pay for the service on the weekend.

The experiment could see customers pay as much as 20 per cent more for the popular video on demand streaming service.

Netflix confirmed to news.com.au it was conducting the analysis but stressed it was just a test at this stage, saying no announcements had been made and no Australian customers were being affected.

"We continuously test new things at Netflix and these tests typically vary in length of time. In this case, we are testing slightly different price points to better understand how consumers value Netflix," the company said in a statement provided to news.com.au.

"Not everyone will see this test and we may not ever offer it generally."

The secret price testing was first reported by The Australian which revealed the US-based company was applying temporary increases to its plans which bumped up their cost in a proportional fashion.

It is believed that increased prices would only be displayed over the weekend to test how users react to any future increases.

The basic ­service increased from $8.99 a month to $9.99, the standard service from $11.99 a month to $13.99 while its premium service jumped from $14.99 to $17.99 a month.

The report claimed the price hike was being targeted at Australian subscribers on weekends and would see a price hike that rolled back to its normal pricing structure on Monday morning. A Netflix spokesperson declined to elaborate further on the nature of the test.

If Netflix did announce a price hike in the Australian market it's likely many subscribers would feel slighted given the fact that Aussie subscribers only have access to about 40 per cent of the content available in the US Netflix library.

Netflix is remaining tight lipped on the subject of rolling out any formal price increases.

However there is speculation that a new tax imposed on the streaming service by the Australian government could be passed on to customers.

In the new financial year, Netflix will be subject to 10 per cent levy charged to international suppliers of digital products and services. Dubbed the "Netflix tax" it is designed to even the playing field for local businesses and protect the Australian GST base.

News Corp Australia

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