If there is one Netflix account, then at least two people share it. Netflix knows this, and its campaign against password sharing has been a long one. In March, the streaming giant announced that it will allow subscribers in Chile, Peru, and Costa Rica to share accounts with people outside of their households in exchange for an extra fee. Later in July, it started testing an “add a home” feature in select markets. And now, it has announced the launch of “Profile Transfer,” a new feature that will let users of an existing account switch to a new one without having to rebuild their profile.
In other words, if you are mooching off someone else and using their Netflix account, you will not have to lose your data such as customized recommendations and viewing history, and start anew when you create an account that you will pay for. With Profile Transfer, you can seamlessly transfer the personalized viewing data to the new account and not have to start from scratch.
“People move. Families grow. Relationships end. But throughout these life changes, your Netflix experience should stay the same. Today, we’re launching Profile Transfer, a feature that lets people using your account transfer a profile — keeping the personalized recommendations, viewing history, My List, saved games, and other settings — when they start their own membership,” Netflix product manager Timi Kosztin informed in a blog post. This feature rolled out to all Netflix users across the globe from Monday, after being tested in Latin America and turning out to be a huge hit.
As soon as Profile Transfer will be available on your Netflix account, you will be notified via email. Once it is available, go to the profile icon on the Netflix homepage and click on the “Transfer Profile” option. Follow the on-screen instructions to create a new profile with its own associated email address and password, complete the process, and share the data. Profile Transfer can be turned off at any time from your account settings.
The addition of this feature, Netflix hopes, will prevent the streaming giant from continuing to lose subscribers – something it has witnessed this year in an alarming amount. While it lost 200,000 subscribers in the first quarter of the year, the following one saw it clock its largest quarterly loss and lose around 970,000 subscribers. It blamed some of its ill fortunes on freeloaders who partake in the accounts of others, estimating that around 100 million households partook in account sharing.
If the freeloaders actually create accounts of their own – ones that they will pay out of their own pockets – then it will provide a much-needed breather to Netflix and help it compete harder against rivals such as Disney+.