Twitch lowers subscription prices in most countries to reflect the cost of living

The move starts with Mexico and Turkey.

Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Twitch has long charged roughly $5 US per month for a standard subscription regardless of where you live, but it's now acknowledging that this isn't necessarily fair to much of the world. The livestreaming service is lowering the prices for subscriptions (including gift subs) in "most countries" to better reflect the costs of living in those places.

The price drops will start on May 20th in Mexico (48 Pesos per month, or about $2.40) and Turkey (9.90 TRY, about $1.20), with many countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East getting their cuts sometime in the third quarter of 2021. What you pay will depend on where you live and have set up your payment method.

The Amazon-owned company said this should make it easier for viewers to support their favorite creators. The percentage of active users with subscriptions in Asia and Europe is about half what you see in North America, and it's 80 percent lower in Latin America. In theory, this helps streamers in most regions by boosting their overall subscription rates.

And yes, Twitch is aware that this could lead to less take-home income for some broadcasters. It's promising to cover all of a channel's baseline (that is, typical) subscription revenue for three calendar months and gradually lower those payments over nine months to ease people into the new price structure. Streamers who outperform their averages during the relevant period will get the higher value, but they'll still be eligible for support from Twitch if numbers drop later.

That subsidy won't be cheap for Twitch. It normally takes 50 percent of a Twitch subscription fee, so it will likely lose money in some countries until the transition is over.

This might not thrill hosts that live in an affluent country but have a large number of subscriptions from elsewhere. However, Twitch is clearly betting that the volume of new subscribers will make up for the lower revenue per person. If nothing else, it's a recognition that Twitch is popular well beyond American borders.