Netflix doesn’t want you to know its subscriber numbers anymore

Netflix price rises announced conquest
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Netflix reports over $2bn profit in three months, and says it’s planning to stop telling us how many subscribers it has.

As battered as the world of streaming may have been over the last year – you’d be forgiven for thinking some of them might be at death’s door given the continual flood of bad news – there’s been some happy times at Netflix.

Thanks primarily to its crackdown on password sharing, a tactic that Disney is now following with its Disney+ service, the company has reported the kind of profits that we’re not used to seeing streaming services make. No pleading poverty going forward, as Netflix’s profits for the first quarter of 2024 came in at $2.3bn.


It earned this profit off the back of bringing in $9.37bn of income in just three months. And it’s celebrating this success by, er, taking away subscriber number reporting.

It gave the reasons for this in a letter that was sent to shareholders. In it, it explained that “we stopped providing quarterly paid membership guidance in 2023 and, starting next year with our Q1’25 earnings, we will stop reporting quarterly membership numbers and ARM.”

No idea what ARM is, but the thinking Netflix gives is that its key metrics are engagement and operating profit margins. The more cynical amongst us might suggest that Netflix figures that its subscriber numbers have now peaked, and as such, there’s no direct benefit to the company ongoing telling us what they are. There’s no legal edict that requires Netflix to tell us how many subscribers it has, so bugger it, it’s no longer going to tell us.

Instead, Netflix – as it rolls out more advertising – is now expecting its revenues to grow a further 16% in the quarter ending June 2024, and over the course of 2024 entirely, it’s looking for revenues to be up by 13 to 15%.

You can read the full letter that the company has sent to shareholders, here.

All this comes against a backdrop of Netflix backing away from very, very expensive films, and investing billions in wrestling. It’d be fair to say that the sands are shifting at the company. It’d also be fair to say that the Christmas party should be a bit better than last year’s.

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