Survey: Netflix Password Sharing Fees Could Hit Huge Slice of US Market

A new streaming survey shows Netflix password sharing changes could affect a surprising percentage of American subscribers.

The Netflix logo on a phone.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The Netflix password sharing crackdown is here, and the company expects a lot of unhappy subscribers. Households will have to pay nearly double each month if they want to share their accounts with people outside their households. 

But how many subscribers are we talking about? A new survey suggests it's more than you think.

Netflix password sharing unites subscribers

A just-released survey from reveals some eye-opening stats about American streaming customers. The researchers surveyed 1,000 Americans on their streaming habits and found a landscape marked by streaming burnout, subscriber churn and of course, frequent password sharing. 

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Almost 40% of respondents have canceled a streaming service subscription in the past six months in response to elevated household costs. That’s even higher than the previous year's survey that found 25% of Americans were planning to ditch Netflix

The survey also reveals that two in five Americans share streaming service logins with people outside of their households. The survey found that over 85% of Americans share their password to Netflix with other people, which is the highest mark among all streaming services.

The next most shared platforms are Hulu (51%), Amazon Prime Video (44%), Max (36%), and Peacock (26%). Paramount+ and Apple TV+ account for less than 25% of password sharing.

Most respondents share passwords with their friends (27.4%), while the next most likely response is sharing with parents (26.7%).

Respondents estimate their average streaming budget is close to $20-$30 per month, which cuts against the likelihood of Netflix subscribers paying nearly double to share passwords. 

Americans streaming service password sharing chart

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Streaming fatigue is real

The team found that many Americans want to simplify their viewing experience. The survey registers a big change in the average number of streaming subscriptions. The average American now subscribes to only two streaming services, down 50% from four subscriptions just six months ago.

Netflix is the most canceled service among Americans, with 21% of respondents unsubscribing in the survey window. It's followed by Hulu (20%), Peacock (14%), and Max (13%).

However, this doesn't mean all those fatigued subscribers simply picked up a book. Over half of Americans joined a new streaming service in the past six months. 

Ultimately, we see a pattern of roughly half of respondents canceling one service, ostensibly to save money, only to pick up a different one shortly thereafter.

Subscribers' most essential streaming

Despite all the angst around Netflix lately, 43% of consumers say Netflix is the one service they can't live without. Hulu (33%) comes in second, while Peacock (26%) is third in subscribers hearts. 

Americans' top streaming service chart

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Ben Demers
Audience Engagement Manager,

Ben Demers manages digital content and engagement at Kiplinger, informing readers through a range of personal finance articles, e-newsletters, social media, syndicated content, and videos. He is passionate about helping people lead their best lives through sound financial behavior, particularly saving money at home and avoiding scams and identity theft. Ben graduated with an M.P.S. from Georgetown University and a B.A. from Vassar College. He joined Kiplinger in May 2017.