Netflix is testing a new mobile-only subscription model in Malaysia

Business / Entertainment / Movies / TV

This new mobile-only model would mean that subscribers could only stream Netflix on a mobile device such as a tablet or smartphone.

Netflix has become a giant in the streaming business and they are aiming to keep it that way. The streaming space is starting to see more competition and even studios are getting in on the action. This could mean a serious threat to Netflix’s position. So the company is testing a new mobile-only subscription model in Malaysia.

This new mobile-only model would mean that subscribers could only stream Netflix on a mobile device such as a tablet or smartphone. The cost of the service is a very reasonable $4 a month. This experiment could prove to be interesting for Netflix as many users have gone mobile for just about everything. Malaysia is the only area that is going to be part of the testing for now so don’t get too excited just yet.

There is a caveat to this mobile plan: you will only be able to stream in standard definition and it looks like streaming to a larger screen is disabled. So basically, if you think you’re going to be able to pay $4 and then use a Chromecast, that’s not going to work. Not to mention, standard definition probably wouldn’t look great if you could cast anyway.

Netflix states this is a test “to understand consumer interest in a mobile-only plan in some countries.” It’s also clearly an attempt to better compete with alternative services that cost far less than Netflix’s typical $8-$10 subscription plans. Bringing a mobile plan to the US and Europe seems unlikely, especially with that standard definition limit in place, but that could change if mobile streaming continues to grow in popularity.

This testing in Malaysia may not lead to much but it is beneficial to the company to try and understand if there is a market for it. Even if people do find a hack to stream or connect to a larger display, standard definition only may be enough for them not to even bother with this.

What do you think of this mobile-only model Netflix is testing? Let us know in the comments below or on Google+, Twitter, or Facebook.

  Source: PCMag
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