Malaysians can watch Netflix anywhere for RM17/month

Netflix has introduced its Mobile-only plan and you can sign up starting today for a lower price of RM17/month. Malaysia is the first country to launch the plan in Southeast Asia.

The mobile plan was released quietly as a test in Malaysia sometime last year and they have launched it officially in India in July.

Like the name suggests, this plan is only for smartphone and tablet usage. At RM17/month it is almost half the price of a Basic Plan that costs RM33/month. The plan is capped at standard definition and you can’t watch it on a bigger screen such as a computer or a TV. Netflix has also confirmed that the plan won’t support Chromecast. Like the Basic plan, you can create up to 5 profiles but only one stream is permitted at a time.

According to Netflix, Malaysia is a mobile-centric market with 88% Malaysians owning smartphones. They added that 7 out of 10 Malaysians are streaming and downloading content via their smartphones, and it makes sense to introduce a mobile only offering.

Although it has a lower price, you still get the same features such as Smart Downloads. This will automatically download the latest episodes when you’re connected to WiFi.

Netflix also has a mobile-optimised encoding that allows you to have a great viewing experience even on connections as low as 250kbps. Obviously having faster speeds will provide better quality but this encoding ensures that you get a smooth stream if you have a spotty connection during your daily commute. Netflix says you can watch 6.5 hours of Netflix content and consume as little as 1GB of mobile data which is good for those without an unlimited data plan.

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Netflix understands that not all mobile users are using the latest smartphones and they have introduced some improvements to cater for budget phone users. The Netflix app can adapt its UI on entry-level devices for faster loading. In their tests, the simplified UI could load up to 2X faster on low-spec phones. The signup process for mobile has also been optimised as well so that you can get started with fewer steps. For first time users, you can enjoy the first 30 days for free.

Depending on your telco, you can also subscribe to Netflix via carrier billing. You can either bill it to your postpaid bill or deduct directly from your prepaid credit.

Alexander Wong