It is not often that Netflix actually makes its way into the news but with its new $7 streaming plan, the company is garnering some attention, mainly because of the absurdity of the idea. By saving $1 each month, Netflix will allow new users to access its streaming video collection but they will only be able to do so in standard definition.
Considering that the vast majority of people who have access to Netflix also have access to an HD television, this plan simply does not make a whole lot of sense.
As of right now, Netflix is testing the plan with a small group of people and it is trying to see if people will see the plan as a viable option if they have less bandwidth to work with.
We always are testing new things and this is a test for a $6.99 single stream plan…Not all people will see this option and it may not be something we ever offer generally. – Netflix spokeswoman
Netflix currently allows customers to pay $8 each month in order to receive HD viewing on two screens simultaneously. This plan is in stark contrast to the new $7 deal which limits a person’s viewing capabilities to one screen and even then, it is still just SD quality.
There appear to be just a handful of situations in which SD viewing makes sense and since it is likely that majority of Netflix’s 40 million subscribers do not have massive bandwidth caps, this plan does not hold up as a sensible option for practically anyone.
Bandwidth is undoubtedly an issue for some people, especially now that streaming video is entering the realm of Super HD, 3D, and 4K. At least in the United States, all of these newer streaming options require bandwidth that is nowhere to be found with some internet service providers but for regular HD, there are very few people that cannot handle it.
As Netflix has also said, it is only testing the $7 plan in a select number of markets as it does with many other ideas. Whether or not the plan, which amounts to $12 in savings each year, will catch on in other markets has yet to be seen.
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