Take a look at our guide to see what you want to subscribe to.
In the age we’re in, we no longer pay one massive bill for a massive package of 500 channels with nothing on them, and instead most of us opt to pay smaller bills for ad-free catalogues of movies and TV shows. It started out as an obvious win, with Netflix over cable TV being the given choice.
But then more and more streaming services made an appearance, and soon that $8.99 subscription we all expected is now $8.99 per streaming service, with 3 or 4 going at any given time.
So, we’re going to break them down. We will see which subscription service is really worth your time and money, based on the catalogue of entertainment offered, the quality of the definition offered, and the overall price of the package. Take a look at our guide to see what you want to subscribe to.
Netflix is the OG. The one that started it all. As Blockbuster and LoveFilm died, Netflix rose from its ashes.
But being the first doesn’t necessarily mean you’re the best. They tend to offer a basis the rest of us can build and improve on, and this philosophy is proven by Netflix’s hit and miss attitude with their original shows and movies. A “Netflix Original” is now a term that makes users uneasy. Is this going to be another masterpiece along the lines of Stranger Things and Squid Game or are we going to hide behind our hands in cringe at another Death Note adaptation disaster?
Meanwhile, it might be the fact that it was the first and is the most popular, or it might be a reflection of Netflix itself, but a common meme is of the user that has spent all their free night looking for something to watch, only to give up and re-binge The Office. Is there nothing to watch amongst the nearly 4,000 movies and 1,940 TV shows?
Netflix also has a tier payment system that dictates its audio and visual quality. You can pay for Basic, Standard and Premium quality entertainment, which do exactly what they say on the tin, with the additional feature of more screens to add to the profile.
Amazon Prime is the option for those who want to get the most from their money. If you sign up, not only are you getting a streaming service, but a whole host of features that extend to Amazon itself, including the invaluable free next day delivery service.
The sound and visual quality varies by the title, as does the SFX and subtitle options, however a majority are a product of when they came from. Amazon offers a catalogue of movies and TV shows that goes back decades, and if you are looking for something you can’t find anywhere else, Amazon is your place.
Unfortunately, the flip side of this is that not everything is included in the subscription price, and if you’re looking for something that isn’t included, you’ll have to pay extra for it on top of your subscription. So, it maintains its reputation as the place you can get anything, but for a price. It’s up to you whether the varying prices of renting extra movies is worth it.
Disney once again proves just how much of a monopoly they have over the entertainment industry with the launch of Disney+. When it was announced, do you remember shrugging your shoulders and saying “I’m not a Disney Adult. I won’t watch anything there”? Me too.
And then the app launched, and we saw that Disney owned rights to distribute ABC, National Geographic, a roster of movies not necessarily aimed at kids and not to mention the Star Wars and Marvel products. Who knew you could watch Hannah Montana and then click over to Grey's Anatomy?
And yet, it’s the last to take its seat at the table. Its catalogue is still quite thin, even with a collection of TV shows you didn’t know they had rights to. You quickly get over that and ask, “Who would want to watch this?” while you browse.
There is time to improve, and in the meantime, Disney does offer quality in the few things you would want to watch. The audio and visual again varies by title, but aside from the classics which haven’t been cancelled and pulled from the catalogue, the app offers fairly new movies and TV shows with the most up to date Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby Atmos systems keeping it going.
It’s true that Disney+ isn’t just for Disney Adults and new parents, but that is still the core demographic being addressed. If Disney wants to make their place in our monthly bills an ongoing occurrence, they should take another look at what the catalogue offers.