US-based on-demand streaming services, Netflix has reportedly started charging its Kenyan subscribers in Kenyan shilling.
Since launching in Kenya in 2016, Netflix has charged its Kenyan subscribers in US Dollars. However, starting from last Tuesday, 21st January 2020, it switched billing to Kenyan shillings.
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Similarly, in 2018, Netflix users in South Africa started paying their subscriptions in rands, the local currency. The basic plan now costs 99 ZAR ($6.81) while the standard plan cost 139 ZAR ($9.56) and the premium plan 169 ZAR ($11.62).
Also, Netflix Nigeria recently started charging its subscribers in their local currency. Right now, the basic plan cost ₦2,900 ($7.99), while the standard plan ₦3, 600 ($9.92) and the premium plan ₦4, 400 ($12.13). This change appears not to be in favour of the Nigerian subscribers as the prices were formerly ₦2,900 ($7.99), ₦3, 600 ($9.99) and ₦4, 346 ($11.99) for its basic, standard and premium plan respectively.
According to a report, this new development was revealed to the Kenyan subscribers via email and Netflix said that "this change is part of our ongoing work to improve Netflix for our members in Kenya".
In addition, Netflix has also reviewed the prices of its basic, standard and premium packages. With these new changes, the subscription plans have been made slightly cheaper.
Previously, with the country's current forex exchange rate, the basic $7.99 plan was Kshs 806, the standard $9.99 plan was Kshs 1,008 and the premium $11.99 plan was Kshs 1,209. Right now, the $7.99 plan will cost Kshs 700 ($6.94); $9.99 plan, Kshs 950 ($9.42) and the $11.99 plan Kshs 1,200 ($11.90).
It may seem that these new charges will not only guard the subscribers against the instability in the value of the dollar but also increase competition with other local video-on-demand services in the country.
Having said this, it remains to be seen when Netflix will extend charging in local currency to other African countries.