Netflix Adds A New Restriction: Limits Customers To One Stream At A Time

Netflix Adds A New Restriction: Limits Customers To One Stream At A Time

Netflix has inflicted a recent number of price increases on its customers and now Netflix is inflicting it’s customers with a new restriction. A customer can only have one streaming video feed per account. This change is going to have a serious impact on families that share a Netflix account.

The one streaming video feed per account restriction means that if you want to watch more than one instant video stream at once you’ll have to sign up for a second Unlimited Streaming account at $7.99 per month or increase the number of DVD’s you receive. According to Consumerist the cost of getting the ability to use more than one stream works out like this:

  • two streams will cost $19.98/month or two DVD’s at a time
  • three streams or three DVDs $23.98/month
  • four streams or four DVDs $29.98/month

Although this policy isn’t new Netflix didn’t do a lot about it in the past. Before now all they did was give you a warning pop-up, but now if you try to exceed your number of allowed video streams you’ll get an error message and you’ll be unable to use another stream to watch another video.

Netflix Adds A New Restriction: Limits Customers To One Stream At A Time

Credit: Stop the Cap!

Consumerist goes on to say that:

With the price increases, Starz removing its programming, and now this move, Netflix’s cherry-red teflon shell could be losing some its luster.

It is interesting to note that a lot of internet services start out really awesome, but over time they really do lose their luster. It looks like Netflix has lost theirs too. The only options you have if you want to see more than one stream is to pay for more streams or consider kicking Netflix to the curb and go with something else.

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  • Rusty Bryant

    This sucks!  #GREED

  • MacRat

    There was nothing current in Netflix streaming anyway.

    Nothing I want to watch is available via streaming so I set my account for DVD only.

  • woodshow

    I think I understand the idea behind separating streaming from discs… and I sorta understand the idea of limiting to a single stream… and I guess I understand their reluctance to pay enough to secure Starz which they’ll be losing early next year.

    But doesn’t it just seem like they’re throwin’ in the towel? It’s like they peered into the future and it wasn’t pretty… RedBox, Blockbuster, Amazon, Apple, Hulu, etc, etc, ad infinitum, ad naseum…  so they decided to milk as much as posible in the next few months.

    I hate to see this happening to Netflix.

  • Wayne_Luke

    I see they are trying to get their Starz, Showtime and Fox content back.

  • seelee

    This sounds like a decision made to please stockholders rather than please customers.

  • al friede

    the beginning of the end….come on apple, daddy needs a la carte viewing [finally]!

  • crateish

    We just got rid the of the DVD portion of our account. And Starz is going away. And now this.

    I think Netflix will be following Blockbuster down the path of oblivion sooner or later.

  • UndefinedAJ

    Why would stockholders care if you are streaming 2 movies at once?

  • Glenn Allen

    Essentially, Netflix is saying that 2 streams cost twice as much as 1, that 3 streams cost three times as much… which is, clearly, false. Plus, they don’t even provide for the logical option of adding streams to a streaming-only account [yet] as they do with discs (about $4/disc). What they should do: (1) each account should allow 2 [simultaneous] streams [period], and (2) you should be able to add extra streams for $2/stream. As it is, ‘Netflix’ is becoming synonymous with ‘rip-off’. (Disclaimer: this change, as well as the recent price change, affects me not at all)

  • Yohannon (Just Yohannon)

    You know what I loved about NetFlix streaming? Being able to watch a TV series without having to keep track of where we left off (they would “bookmark” it for you) and without having to dig out and insert discs. (or, in the case of the vast number of region 2 discs, ripping them prior to streaming to my Apple TV). Bluntly, it was work the 10 bucks a month to not have to rip discs (and the wait involved). Now? Starting to wonder if Apple is going that subscription route, cause if they do, NetFlix and Comcast should both be in fear for their revenues.

  • God

    Ba…Bye!

  • Joel Balderas

    Hopefully this gives them some leverage to negotiate more titles.

  • Jax

    Agree with the other comments that as soon as another option is available Netflix may be in big trouble.  I know I’ll switch in a heart beat at this point.

  • Metadvisor2002

    Cause more subscriptions are more income. Some peopl, unlike myself, won’t care and will buy another subscription. Also it makes Netflix look more efficient and economical with lower operational costs and that attracts stock holders. They weigh that against the business losses due to the change and then decide if they will buy.

  • baby_Twitty

    NOT trying to side Netflix, but THIS STORY IS NOT VERY ACCURATE.

     i’ve tested just now, and i am STILL ABLE TO STREAM movies at the same time on 2 different devices via 1 account.

    My advice to any Netflix users is to conduct your own test before commenting.

  • Josh

    They totally priced themselves out of a customer.  I had decided to cut the cable about a year ago and put up an HD antenna as well as subscribe to Hulu Plus.  I figured it out last night and looked up cable companies cost…we were paying $31 per month for Netflix streaming, Blockbuster two at a time DVD’s and Hulu Plus.  AT&T U-Verse is $39 per month (I got a steal of a deal) for their U200 package with On Demand as well as their whole home DVR with HD streams. Needless to say, U-Verse is getting re-installed tomorrow and the other fiasco is being cancelled. It’s kind of sad, really.  Netflix is done…

  • Jay Floyd

    Meh.  The ‘everything should be free or extremely cheap’ sentiment created by the internet has to die.  The end result is that it kills too many jobs.

  • NickDaniel

    ..woohooo.,.I just got a $829.99 iPad2 for only $103.37 and my mom got a $1499.99 HDTV for only $251.92, they are both coming with USPS tomorrow. I would be an idiot to ever pay full retail prices at places like Walmart or Bestbuy. I sold a 37″ HDTV to my boss for $600 that I only paid $78.24 for. I use CentHub.c?m

  • NickDaniel

    I figured it out last night and looked up cable companies cost…we were paying $31 per month for Netflix streaming, Blockbuster two at a time DVD’s and Hulu Plus.  AT&T U-Verse is $39 per month (I got a steal of a deal) for their U200 package with On Demand as well as their whole home DVR with HD streams…@Brad, ..woohooo.,.I just got a $829.99 iPad2 for only $103.37 and my mom got a $1499.99 HDTV for only $251.92, they are both coming with USPS tomorrow. I would be an idiot to ever pay full retail prices at places like Walmart or Bestbuy. I sold a 37″ HDTV to my boss for $600 that I only paid $78.24 for. I use CentHub.c?m

  • realroz

    I can see why they did this. Basically if I have a group of friends we could all share the same login across all of our devices and pay one charge. There really would be no limit to the number of people who could share an account as long as they are willing to disclose what they watched to the group. Something like this is needed to close this loophole. 

    Also, people should get real about what is going on here. Nothing is free. Netflix is trying to get the content holders to open up to streaming services and to get them play ball Netflix has had to write big checks. That is going to come out somewhere – I guess it comes out in price increases and policies like this.

  • Jeff Norris

    I was a big fan of Netflix streaming.  I gladly paid.  But I’ve noticed there is less and less content.  I’ve moved to Hulu Plus and am leaving Netflix behind.  

  • dsjr2006

    Looks like it’s time to go back to pirating….

  • CharliK

    I question one thing about this. I was under the impression that streaming and DVDs are considered totally separate now. So increasing the DVDs you get would do nothing. Your only choice would be a second streaming account

  • CharliK

    Apple basically is a la carte viewing. 

    Unless you mean that they need all shows day after in their notion of HD rather than half of them being SD and many of them not turning up until the DVD release. In which case, yes that would be key. 

    Also, get the networks to count the money that comes in toward budget make good. THat would help to ease some of the censorship by a vast minority that is the ratings system

  • Guest

    I think this is the content providers more than Netflix themselves. They are squeezing them and now they no option but to charge more. They could do what they wanted when they were small, but the content companies do not want another Apple music deal. Sooner or later someone will break them, but until them we, the consumer, will continue to be screwed.

  • Kankrej

    I will be canceling Netflix.

  • Custom

    Time to let go of those guys….

  • toddgarvin

    Well this sucks. I have 3 apple tvs, 2 iphones, 1 ipad and 1 ipod touch. If i want to watch Netflix on more than one of those at a time, then my price is suddenly going to double or triple? I just cancelled DVDs. The only reason I have the streaming is for my kids who watch lots of cartoon/youth related content on netflix. Not going to increase my monthly bill for that.

  • Christian

    Well im dropping netflix in any case but this for sure would have made me get rid of them.  Im just tired of their poor selection of material for anyone over the age of 10 in any case but now their just shooting themselves in the foot.

  • Bryon Cole

    This really sucks! My three kids enjoy being able to watch cartoons In their rooms from the Wii while my wife and I enjoy a movie. Looks like we will be looking into another streaming alternative. Attention Apple and Amazon: could one of you guys buy Hulu and welcome us aboard. This red ship is sinking….fast!

  • Alex

    So I guess all these people are complaining because they are all watching more then one stream at the same time ? I tend to watch one movie or show at a time since I don’t have ADHD.
     Or ..
    Are they’re whining because they are using another account holders login ? 

  • Andrew

    Time to cancel Netflix

  • Dimitri Theofilopoulos

    wrong as always, I have up 4 streams in the house right now, 2 iPhones, one roku and one ps3, not a single problem

  • Dimitri Theofilopoulos

    no fucktard, we are complaining because we own more than one device and we have families that have smart phones and other devices that can watch tv at any given time, we are not loners with no friends and family sitting in a basement with one tv watching netflix 

  • Mattheq

    Lame beyond belief. If they’re concerned about friends sharing logins, why can’t Netflix lock streams down by ip range?

    Not renewing after the end of the month. New releases are rare these days anyway.

  • efforting

    I agree. It’s hard for me to complain when I was paying $75 a month for cable 2 years ago. The choice and control that Netflix has brought to my viewing is a bargain in comparison.

  • Dimitri Theofilopoulos

    because if they do, you wouldn’t be able to watch it on your mobile devices while not at home.

  • Michael Crane

    I guess this means all my friends will have to stop leeching off my account.  Good job closing the loophole, Netflix.  P.S. I like how the image of Netflix lets us have a glimpse into the author’s viewing habits.  Thumbs up on Stargate!

  • mrplowinc

    They could have you register devices – Sky do this for streaming content in the UK.

  • KillianBell

    It’s possible that Netflix is still rolling out the restriction and that some subscribers may not see it instantly.

  • Zachary Hunt

    does Hulu plus have a greater variety of movies/shows? 

  • Roy Lin

    Haha awesome response :)

  • Jae Jun Ha

    Families are in an uproar, I imagine !

  • FriarNurgle

    Might as well cancel Netflix and just get a Internet/TV/Phone cable bundle pack… 

    Someone slap me.

  • rdc

    wow, you’re a great dad.  it’s $8/month.  man up.

  • Snoop

    aye, cap’n.

  • Janderson

    Since when is being a great dad include spending as much money as possible?

  • karmaisabitch2011

    Start shorting Netflix stock.

  • karmaisabitch2011

    says someone without kids.

  • Goaway

    Sounds a  lot like a family who can’t stand to be in the same room with one another and need to have their own media stream to block out the other jackasses in the house though!

  • matheau

    You mean, it wasn’t always like this? I guess I was missing out then.

    It’d be nice if they allowed 2 or 3 streams to the same IP. But it’s not something I would expect. I’ve been surprised that I’ve been able to stream so many different movies, TV shows, documentaries, etc—All commercial free and for only $8/mo.

    Does anyone know how the licensing/royalties they pay work? Do they pay per view?

  • Mike Rathjen

    To all those leaving Netflix’s $8 for unlimited streaming, where are you going?

    There is no unlimited streaming service with anything near the catalog and price of Netflix.

    Per-per-view streaming is $2 to $5 at other services, so that’s only 2 to 4 titles before you’re paying more than Netflix anyway. Many services not available on mobiles.

    The Amazon Prime catalog that isn’t pay-per-view is tiny. Hulu Plus is mostly TV shows and has annoying commercials.

    Local rental DVDs have a small selection, are not as casual as streaming, require you to obtain and return a disc, and you’d still have to stop at 2-8 titles before exceeding Netflix cost. Also not available on your mobiles.

    Cable/Dish “streams” are also limited by the number of tuners you have, which you typically have to buy or rent, and price is stratospheric compared to Netflix. Also not available on your mobiles for the most part. And you’re paying to watch commercials for 33% of the time.

    OTA antenna is severely limited “catalog”, DVRs tend to cost $$$, and it isn’t available on mobiles.

    So I’m curious, what’s your alternative?

  • baby_Twitty
  • baby_Twitty
  • baby_Twitty

    my own tests do not lie.
    Also u might wanna check out Engadget under similar article regarding this issue, see for urself.

  • baby_Twitty

    my own tests do not lie.
    Also u might wanna check out Engadget under similar article regarding this issue, see for urself.

  • RaycerXray

    The days of the whole family sitting on the sofa watching the same program like some sort of 50′s sitcom is long over. Multiple streams from the same IP should be allowed – so Goaway’s comment was lame (and insulting) at the very least.

  • Dilbert A

    Netflix should purchased the WB back catalog.  They could still try for original programming, but they should go for cult classics that been dropped by SyFy or the networks.   

  • Dilbert A

    Too many commercials, more the TV, poor rez, poor cs, you can’t stream as much content to mobile devices.

  • Dilbert A

    At this rate you’ll be paying $75 again in no time.

  • sloness

    They already limited the streaming to 3 devices, so too bad for the kids-they don’t pay the bills.  I will say, however, one more price increase and I’m done.

  • sloness

    completely agree

  • sloness

    A mere 5 months ago we received an error message that said we had 3 devices going at once and our limit was 3.  With a family of 5, that’s pretty easy to do.  My guess is they didn’t get as many takers for the DVD rental so they need to make up some money.  They already had a streaming limit.

  • Alex

    After reading your other rantings posts I now understand why you need that separate stream … 

    How is the wifi reception in your parents basement  ?

  • Alex

    Some of us still do things together …..  Real social interaction with other humans, you should try it.

  • rose

    You would think that with the price increase they would have
    just stopped at that. I think it is ridiculous that they have restricted the
    streaming with that. I knew I switched services for a reason. Since my
    provider/employer DISH Network is offering Blockbuster free for 3 months I
    thought I would try that out. Check out this link for the promotion through
    Blockbuster http://bit.ly/iH7nwg. I can get games
    and Blu-ray DVDs at no extra charge, and also get new releases 28 days before
    Netflix. I like this option better then staying with Netflix.
     

  • Natedogg86

    Wow this is way more than what Blockbuster charges!
    Blockbuster is offering a 30 free trial for their Total Access plans and you
    can rent one disc at a time for only 9.99/mo which includes games, and blu-rays
    or you can rent two discs at a time for only $14.99/mo. Working for DISH
    Network I can tell you new DISH customers can now get 3 months free of
    Blockbuster by mail rental. Check this link out http://goo.gl/wuMrN.

  • Spikerogers5479

    For some reason netflix tries to say this was always the case.  NOT …. when I signed up for the 1 dvd at a time package I could stream from computer and up to I think 2 or 3 devices.  The computer didnt count as a device.  Now only one at  a time no matter if its a computer or not.  My little girl likes to watch cartoons whle I watch a movie……  I AM NOT GOING TO PAY FOR 2 dvds at a time or get two accounts this is stupid.  I think you should at least be able to do the computer and a device or 2 devices because NETFLIX some people have kids and a budget….. I dont think we need to let this just go… 

About the author

David W. MartinDavid W. Martin has more than 20 years of experience in the industry as a programmer, systems and business analyst, author, and consultant. David has written for CNET's iPhoneatlas.com, MacLife.com, CultofMac.com, BYTE.com and recently for aNewDoman.net. He comes to Cult of Mac's website with deep knowledge and passion for the all things Apple. Follow David on Twitter @david_w_martin or see what he's up to now at davidwmartin.com.

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