Netflix Likely to Launch an Ad-Supported Plan in the ‘Next Year or Two’

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings shared during the company’s Q1 earnings call that we’ll likely see a new ad-supported tier of Netflix within the next couple years.

Hastings’ comments come just over a month after Netflix CFO Spencer Neumann commented during a Morgan Stanley investor conference that the company had no plans for adding an ad-support tier.

Hastings noted that offering an ad-supported plan would give streamers a lower priced option, an important consideration after Netflix subscribers made sure to let the company know they weren’t happy with the most recent price hike.

“Those who have followed Netflix know that I have been against the complexity of advertising, and a big fan of the simplicity of subscription,” Hastings said. “But as much as I am a fan of that, I am a bigger fan of consumer choice. And allowing consumers who would like to have a lower price, and are advertising-tolerant get what they want, makes a lot of sense.”

With subscriber numbers declining, leadership seems to be looking to competitors as an example of how to make the service more attractive to new customers.

“It is pretty clear that it is working for Hulu, Disney is doing it, HBO did it. We don’t have any doubt that it works,” Hastings said, sharing that Netflix will have plan options similar to Hulu.