After the changes that Netflix announced to limit the use of shared accounts, we are now in a kind of limbo. And it is that the company gave us until February 21 to establish a main location in which to continue watching Netflix without interruptions. However, more than a week after that deadline, everything is pretty much the same as before.
For more than a week we have been testing to simultaneously play content on Netflix from several different televisions. While this was a practice that the company was going to start limiting, it seems that we can continue to access the service as normal. This gives us to understand that, or it will still take a long time until the changes take effect, or the company may choose to limit the use of shared accounts passively, that is, through only warnings and notifications.
What we are clear about is that Netflix wants every household to have its own account to access the platform. This will be complicated, because according to a recent study, more than 60% of Spanish users share an account. In addition, it will be difficult to control all the situations in which Netflix is accessed, leaving family members who leave home for an extended period of time and want to continue enjoying Netflix on a TV in no man’s land.
In our tests, we have used a Netflix account in different homes and played content for hours simultaneously. This includes TVs, mobile devices, and computers. Having set the main location on one of the TVs, the system allowed us to continue sharing an account with users accessing from outside this location.
The funny thing about it is that, those who had not even established a main location before the deadline that Netflix gave, can still use the service without setting the location. The idea was that the platform itself would establish a main location automatically once the deadline had passed, but apparently this has not been the case.
To configure a main location, just go to the section dedicated to it in the ‘get help‘ of the TV app. In this way, the TV would be the epicenter of the Netflix access verification system, restricting access to the account from a television that is outside the WiFi network configured as the main location.
When accessing this same menu from another television once the main location has been established, we will have information about which user, from which location and which television are configured as main.
In Chile, it took months for users to stop being able to access a Netflix account from different homes. We may be going the same way.
To find out this information, Netflix makes use of IP detection and activity of the devices and thus know if we are accessing from another location, applying the limitations that you see pertinent (such as requiring verification by email or having to request a temporary access of 7 days).
Although for the moment Netflix has not applied any type of limitation, the system is already in place, and to allow users to access an account from a different home, Netflix launched its ‘sub-accounts’ system. Are They are priced at 5.99 euros per month on the total cost of what users already pay for the plan to which they are subscribed.
The user who wants to access from another house with his television will thus have his own sub-account with his own credentials attached to the main account. For Premium plans, the maximum number of subaccounts allowed is 2, while for the Standard plan there is only one additional subaccount.
At the moment Netflix is not showing warnings on the platform or applying limitations of any kind. However, this was the case for a time when these measures were implemented in some Latin American countries. Specifically in Chile, it took months for users to stop being able to access a Netflix account from different homes.
In theory there would be no problem when trying to play from a mobile device or computer outside the main location, since Netflix would consider in this case that you have gone out for a not very long time or are on vacation. For it we will have to verify access via email or SMSgetting a temporary access of about 7 additional days.
There would be no such luck if we want to access it from a TV that is not on the main network. And it is that for Netflix, the Smart TV will be the epicenter of your system of restrictions to share account. However, as we have mentioned, the restrictions are still not applied and we are not sure when they will be finally implemented.
The question is whether it will end up happening to us like our brothers in Latin America and Netflix will impose its limits on shared accounts in the coming months or if everything will stay in a scare and settle for the sub-accounts that have been signing up for the service during these days.