Streaming Price Hikes Are Pushing Americans to Their Limits

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Just paying for Netflix or Hulu seems like no big deal, but a new report from Deloitte suggests most Americans are paying for four streaming services. That’s pushing Americans to the brink, leading to the average household spending $61 a month on streaming. Half of the study’s respondents said they would cancel a streaming subscription if prices go up by another $5.

“This year’s Digital Media Trends shows that U.S. households are spending more on streaming video subscriptions, but they may be reaching their limits,” said Deloitte in its report, surveying over 3,500 Americans.

Americans are spending 27% more on streaming than they did last year, up from $48. That $13 increase could have something to do with Netflix and Max raising prices in 2023, or a slew of streaming services cracking down on password sharing. Many consumers may have also upgraded their streaming service when their basic plan was injected with ads, as Amazon Prime did this year.

Americans are fed up with the various ways streamers get them to cough up more money, and the sheer number of services. Roughly 75% of Gen Z and millennials would like a way to combine all these streamers, according to the report, so they could search for content across all the services they pay for.

Is streaming still a good deal? The average American’s bundle of streaming services is nearing the price of popular cable packages. Xfinity, Spectrum, and Optimum offer over 100 channels for between $50 and $85 a month. Streaming was once offered as a more affordable solution to cable, but it’s quickly becoming just as expensive.

Another reason consumers are upset with streaming is that Netflix, Disney+, and Max’s algorithms have not gotten much better. Over 50% of younger respondents figure out what to watch from social media, rather than a streaming service’s recommendations. Social media algorithms are so good, in fact, that users under 41 years old say they prefer social media videos to any other video content.

The report from Deloitte confirms what many users are experiencing. The streaming price hikes, password crackdowns, and ad injections are turning a once-beloved product into “Cable 2.0.” Watchers are exhausted and fatigued by streaming services, but we’ll see just how far media companies are willing to push.

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