Continue Reading Below
The price increases were first announced in January and have rolled out gradually in recent months, with all U.S. subscribers affected by the start of the May billing cycle. The hike is the largest in Netflix’s history and the fourth price increase overall.
The cost of Netflix’s premium plan, which provides access to four Ultra HD streams, rose to $15.99 from $13.99. The standard plan, which provides two HD streams, increased to $12.99 from $10.99, and the basic plan increased to $8.99 from $7.99.
“We change pricing from time to time as we continue investing in great entertainment and improving the overall Netflix experience,” the company said in a statement.
Netflix is expected to spend $15 billion on original content alone in 2019 as it looks to lure subscribers amid a growing field of streaming rivals that includes Amazon and Disney. The company had nearly 149 million paid global subscribers as of April, including more than 60 million in the U.S.
Netflix’s rate of U.S. subscriber growth slowed in the first quarter. However, the company said in a shareholder letter than it doesn’t expect new streaming services to have a major impact on its business.
"We don’t anticipate that these new entrants will materially affect our growth because the transition from linear to on demand entertainment is so massive and because of the differing nature of our content offerings," the company said in a statement. "We believe there is vast demand for watching great TV and movies and Netflix only satisfies a small portion of that demand."