Netflix recently announced that it will be raising its prices in the US – the fourth price hike since it first launched. According to a report by the CNBC, the money generated from this increase will be poured into finance debt and further production of original films and shows.
Netflix has a competitive edge over its direct rivals in the streaming service game, in that investors will allow the company to spend way more money than what it is bringing in. Create now, worry about the debt later. This may seem risky, but it also shows how much confidence the investors have in the company going forward. Other streaming services, current and upcoming, just can't afford this kind of wriggle room.
Netflix South Africa, on the other hand, said that the price increases are specific to each country, and the US price hike will not influence or indicate a price change in South Africa. So that's good news for us.
Even with a price hike, though, streaming services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu and Showmax will still provide better value for money than any Pay TV services like DStv. With the steady rise of fast, reliable and affordable internet, streaming services have been able to put an immense amount of pressure on Pay TV companies, and it is little wonder why people are now cancelling their DStv in droves. Streaming services work out far more affordable, and (with the notable exclusion of SuperSport) offer pretty much everything, and more, that DStv can.
DStv's parent company, MultiChoice, has even come out and said that the satellite TV industry is currently looking out over a cliff, and it's no different in any other country.
So, let's take a look at just how much money you could save by cancelling DStv and moving over to Netflix.
In order to ascertain just how much money you'll be saving by moving over to Netflix, there are a couple of factors to take into account. Firstly, you have your monthly subscription fee. Then you have any additional monthly fees for add-ons. Then you have your installation fee, if any, and lastly, of course, your monthly internet fee.
The gap in the monthly subscription fee price between Netflix and DStv is glaring.
The DStv Premium package, which includes all channels, comes in at R809 per month, in which you're locked into a twelve-month contract. Bear in mind that this April will see yet another price increase put into effect.
The Netflix Standard HD package costs only R139 per month, on a month-to-month basis. If you wanted the Netflix Premium package for Ultra High Definition viewing (which is quite unnecessary) it still comes in cheaper at R169 per month.
MyBroadband recently pitted Netflix Standard up against DStv Premium, and tallied up how much you would be paying for each over a year-long period.
Here are a couple of factors to take into account. The first month of Netflix is 100% free of charge, and the DSTV Premium price excludes the Access Fee add-on of R90 per month, which would grant you access to PVR and DStv Now usage.
So, for the below comparison, MyBroadband included the cost of the DStv Access Fee – because without it, it's not really a Premium package, is it? This brings the total to R899 per month.
DStv's annual price amounts to R10 788, while Netflix only costs R1 529 a year. This is a massive difference of R9 259 per year.
But, now we need to take a home internet connection into account. In order to watch Netflix, you'll need an unthrottled, reliable WiFi connection of at least 5Mbps. Anything lower, and you're going to be watching a whole lot of buffering – the equivalent of trying to watch DStv during a massive thunderstorm.
Now, the chances are pretty good that if you can afford a R900 DStv bill every month, you probably already have an internet connection of some kind at home. If that's the case, you're practically already paying for your Netflix.
If you don't have an internet connection, you'll need to get one before you can enjoy any streaming service. We put together a helpful guide on the best Fibre packages around some time ago – and depending on which ISP you go with, you may or may not have to shell out a once-off connection fee in order to get your internet up and running. Most companies, however, do not charge a connection fee – it's for free, and they'll even throw in a complimentary WiFi router.
MyBroadband opted for a 10Mbps uncapped Fibre account from Cool Ideas, running off of Openserve. This isn't a bad choice at all, as Cool Ideas is often ranked as one of the best internet service providers in the country.
A 10Mbps Fibre connection from Cool Ideas costs R499 per month, on a month-to-month basis, and includes installation and a router. When combined with the subscription cost of Netflix, it amounts to R7 517 per year.
You're still saving R3 271 a year or R261 per month. Plus, now you have uncapped internet.
As South Africa's leading independent online insurance comparison site, we know what's good.
We see our news room as a sort of Mythbusters for consumers. Sign up to the CompareGuru newsletter for up-to-date comparisons on everything from cars, fibre internet, loyalty programmes and much, much more.
CompareGuru has you covered.