Netflix has raised the price of its standard streaming service to $9.99, an ambitious move for a company that has the gall to refuse to stream The O.C., no matter how many times I tweet at them.
Longtime subscribers currently pay $8.99/month for the Standard package, which gives you unlimited access to their high definition streaming catalog across multiple devices—no DVD rentals here, but no one's computer has a CD-ROM drive anyway. New subscribers have to pay the extra buck per month now (non-HD still costs $7.99), but if you have the Standard plan already, you've got a one-year grace period until the cost hikes, so don't get hooked on Narcos just yet!
Now, a $1-per-month increase isn't exactly wallet-stretching, and someone who's been sporadically slapped with a $40/month increase on their cable bill (as in, everyone) may sneer at this disdain. Still, the uptick makes Netflix more expensive than Amazon Prime, which breaks down to $8/month, and Hulu, whose standard streaming package is $8/month, though for $14 you can kill the ads.
The good news is, Netflix is adding more and more original content. Though some efforts have been spotty (Bloodline, Hemlock Grove) and, frankly, overrated (looking at you, House Of Cards), shows like BoJack Horseman, The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Orange Is The New Black and the aforementioned Narcos make the service worth it, even if they de-streamed The Beautician and the Beast . After all, HBO Now, HBO's standalone streaming service, runs $15/month, and you only need that during Game Of Thrones season or when you need to marathon Sex And The City when you are sad.
Still, if Netflix is going to make us pay more to enjoy it, at the very least they could gift us the streaming adventures of the Newport Beach crew. Adam Brody and Benjamin McKenzie might be all grown up and making babies these days, but to us, Ryan, Seth, Marissa, and Summer are timeless.