Netflix has added nearly six million new subscribers following its crackdown on password sharing.
The streaming giant ended the April-June quarter with 238 million subscribers, up 5.9 million since the company began restricting the sharing of accounts to a single household.
Netflix said few people had cancelled as a result of the password changes and it believed the programme would fuel similar subscriber gains in the months ahead.
The company introduced its “paid sharing” programme in the UK, US and other major markets in May, charging an extra fee if users want to share passwords with people outside their households.
It has estimated that more than 100 million households share passwords in breach of its official rules.
“While we’re still in the early stages, we’re seeing healthy conversion of borrower households,” the company said in a quarterly update to investors. “Now that we’ve launched paid sharing broadly we have increased confidence in our financial outlook.”
Netflix said profits for the quarter came in at $1.5 billion, with expectations that revenues will accelerate in the second half of this year.
Netflix is battling to regain market share after losing nearly 1.2 million subscribers in the first six months of 2022, the first decline in a decade, after a viewership boom during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Netflix is also grappling with the effects of the actors and writers’ strikes in the US. The strike has shut down many television and film productions, although Netflix is partly shielded from its effects as it makes much of its content overseas.
The company said it would spend less on content this year than expected as a result of the strike.
Netflix said in its earnings release that it would phase out its cheapest advertisement-free plan, in an apparent effort to encourage people to switch to pricier plans or plans that include advertisements.