Many, if not all, decisions boil down to cost and convenience. We have experienced many changes in convenience through services within this last year, such as home-offices, delivery and takeout, etc.
More steady changes over time, however, are greatly due to technology. Technology continues to replace, enhance and alter all that once was. Technology has provided us with streaming service platforms, many both aiming and succeeding at taking the place of cable television. As streaming service options continue to increase and offer, it is difficult to know which service has the most to offer.
First, a Netflix subscription starts at $8.99 for a basic plan, $13.99 for a standard plan and $17.99 for a premium plan. The plans vary with the number of devices allotted and HD capability. With Netflix, however, content is released and replaced every month. Aside from Netflix originals, it usually takes a while for newer content to be available to stream.
A competing Hulu subscription releases new content much faster and is priced at $5.99 a month with ads, $11.99 a month with no ads and even offers Hulu + Live TV for $64.99 a month with ads and $70.99 without. Though commercials are factored in with Hulu, content release and speed plays a significant role.
Netflix and Hulu have had their names in the streaming game for the longest, but some newcomers are giving them a run for their money.
HBO Max offers a variety of movie and TV options and is priced at $14.99 a month. New movies are continuously released, and HBO originals are also available. The originals include TV classics like Game of Thrones and The Sopranos.
Serving as another option is an Amazon Prime subscription. As a college student, you get six months free and a discounted rate of $6.49 per month. A regular Prime subscription sits at $12.99 per month. This comes with many benefits such as two-day shipping and access to many movies and shows. It also includes Amazon's original content like The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and The Boys.
But where can you turn when you want to watch a Disney movie?
That’s where yet another streaming service comes in: Disney+. A Disney+ subscription does not offer a student discount and sits at $6.99 a month. Providing a package, Disney+ also offers a more expensive bundle, including both access to Hulu and ESPN+ with ads for $12.99 a month and Hulu without ads for $18.99 a month. The Hulu and ESPN package makes Disney+ uniquely appealing to both children and adults.
There are many other streaming services aside from these “big five,” some even focusing on solely being cable alternatives. YoutubeTV, Philo and Sling vary in price, channel and catered audience while providing TV channels and services. Streaming services are continuously increasing with even major cable networks such as AT&T and Comcast.
When comparing the price of multiple subscriptions to a cable subscription, it is important and interesting to look at these gains and losses.
Each service, for both movies and television, has their pros and cons and make for just settling on one nearly impossible. I typically use Prime for watching movies and have found that Hulu is great for game shows. Netflix is always one I keep around to rewatch old shows, acting as a warm hug until they’re taken off and replaced. It is not an inexpensive endeavor, as proven to be the case with most everything, regardless of choice.
Lauren Patterson is a sophomore studying journalism. Please note that the views and ideas of columnists do not reflect those of The Post. Want to talk to Lauren? Tweet her @lpaatt.