How has the Netflix password crackdown affected profits? 

Netflix has reported a surge in profits during the first quarter of this year, which it has partly put down to measures taken to address password sharing.

The latest password crackdown, which was first announced last year, was met with some negative feedback. Password sharing has become a common practice among users, but the company is now pushing customers to open new profiles if they want to share with friends or family members going forward. 

The company says that, because of the move, it gained 9.3 million new customers in the first quarter of the year, bringing its subscriber count to nearly 270 million. Profit for the first quarter has also risen to over $2.3 billion.

Despite these positive results, the company says that it plans to stop reporting key subscriber metrics, possibly starting as soon as next year. 

In a letter to shareholders, Netflix explained that it now considers subscriber numbers just one aspect of its growth strategy, along with profits and revenue. Revenue for the first quarter increased by nearly 15% year-on-year to $9.37 billion.

Netflix attributed its success in part to a string of hit releases, including Squid Game, Wednesday, Stranger Things, Bridgerton, and Money Heist.  

However, some investors interpreted the decision to halt subscriber number reporting as a signal that Netflix’s rapid customer expansion might be slowing down, leading to a decrease in Netflix shares by almost 5% following the announcement.

The move to discontinue sharing subscriber numbers has managed to stir some controversy among analysts in the US. For example, Jamie Lumley of research firm Third Bridge recently raised concerns about Netflix’s subscriber growth prospects.

Even though there are some uncertainties about its future, Netflix shares have climbed by more than 30% since the beginning of the year, nearing their peak in 2021. The company is now diversifying its offerings by venturing into sports and video games while also licensing content from competitor media firms to boost profitability.

Analysts noted that Netflix’s global presence has enabled it to maintain a strong lineup of new shows, despite disruptions in Hollywood due to strikes last year.


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