There are services like Apple Music that do not offer a free tier supported by ads, but there are also some like Spotify that do, allowing users to stream on its platform while also generating revenue from advertisements.
Netflix is in the former category, but it appears that the company could be planning on moving into the latter because according to a report from the New York Times, they have obtained an internal memo where Netflix’s executives told staff that they plan on introducing an ad-supported tier later on in the year, possibly towards the last 3 months of 2022.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like this will be similar to Spotify in that it will be free. Instead, it will be a cheaper subscription option that will be supported by ads, kind of like Hulu which has a cheaper ad-supported option for those who don’t want to pay the full price. Other streaming platforms like HBO Max also offer something similar, so it’s not like it’s a brand new thing.
We’re not sure how much cheaper this ad-supported tier will cost, but in some countries, Netflix does offer a cheaper tier that lets users stream to their mobile devices only, so presumably this ad-supported tier will be cheaper than that. The company has been experiencing quite a substantial loss in subscribers recently, so presumably they are hoping that a cheaper option could draw some of them back in.
Source: New York Times