Netflix subscribers just got a useful new software feature upgrade

Much-requested new feature now live for all Netflix subscribers

Netflix logo shown on TV with remote control being pointed at the screen
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

For any Netflix subscriber who finds themselves frequently logging into their account on various guest devices while traveling, such as on hotel TVs, a friend's laptop, or the communal office tablet, then a now-live new software feature is going to be music to their ears.

That's because, as announced on the official Netflix blog (opens in new tab), the streaming service has just rolled out a new software feature that lets any Netflix account holder remotely sign devices (and people) out of their Netflix account.

So, for example, if you've gone away on holiday and accidentally left your Netflix account active on your hotel room's TV, then now you can remotely cut off that device from access to your account with a button press. Handy right?

The new software feature is called Managing Access and Devices, and can be found in a Netflix subscriber's Account Settings menu. You can see what it looks like in the image below, where you can see how the feature looks when accessed on my own account.

Netflix Manage Access and Devices screen

Netflix's new Manage Access and Devices software feature.

(Image credit: Future)

As you can see, you can see a list of all the devices that are currently logged into (and have access to) your Netflix account, with the device name, profile, last watched time and approximate location with IP address listed. This means you can now easily see if you've got any rogue sign-ins and quickly take access away, something that is done by simply clicking the 'sign out' button next to the device in question.

You can access the new Manage Access and Devices software feature on web browsers, as well as on iOS devices like iPhones and iPads, as well as Android phones, so you could even eject devices and other people from your account while on the go.

The T3 take: A great new feature, but likely a herald to Netflix's password sharing crackdown

I do welcome this new software feature, as I have left my account logged in to guest devices multiple times. I've also often gone on holiday to find a stranger's account on offer to me when booting up a streaming service app like Netflix. It's clearly something that affects a lot of subscribers.

All that said, though, I also can't help but take this news with one eye on the Netflix password sharing crackdown that is coming in imminently according to reports. The move is widely considered by critics to be a way for Netflix to make more money, which it needs after losing hundreds of thousands of subscribers this year.

According to Netflix, 45% of its subscribers share their account password with other people (that's about 100 million people worldwide) and instead of these people watching for free, Netflix wants to now charge the account holder $2.99 / £2.99 per person per month if they're watching from another household.

This tool, in my eyes then, is about to get a lot of use. I think Netflix will mass introduce the new supplemental charge and then drop the responsibility onto account holders to manage their accounts in terms of who has access. If a subscriber doesn't want to end up paying even more each month, then if they've got other people signed into their account in other households, they're going to have to kick them off.

Deputy Editor for T3.com, Rob has been writing about computing, gaming, mobile, home entertainment technology, toys (specifically Lego and board games), smart home and more for over 15 years. You can find Rob's work in magazines, bookazines and online, as well as on podcasts and videos, too. Outside of his work Rob is passionate about motorbikes, skiing/snowboarding and team sports, with football and cricket two favourites. Feel free to contact him with any related products, events, and announcements.