Gone are the days when you had to wait for a week to see the next episode of your favorite series. Today, it only takes a click of a mouse (or a tap on your smartphone screen) to dive into your favorite fantasy world, procedural or medical drama. You can stream movies and series on pretty much everything with a screen and an internet connection, from a smart TV to a smartwatch.
A few years ago, we only had a couple of services to choose from – even this small variety was, in turn, enough for many (the “cord cutters”) to give up their cable subscriptions and switch exclusively to streaming. In the last few years, in turn, several other streaming services emerged, most of them with great original content to feed our passion for binge-watching.
$4.99 a month, 1 year free with the purchase of any Apple device
Apple is well-known for its computers, smartphones, and smartwatches – and since last year, as a content provider for all these devices, and more. Apple TV+, its video-on-demand service, was launched last November and immediately made waves with its varied original content.
The Cupertino giant spent a great deal of money on series, covering everything from alternative history dramas (For All Mankind) and sitcoms (The Morning Show) to science fiction (See) and romantic comedies (Little Voice).
Apple TV+ is available in more than 100 countries around the world.
$14.99 a month
HBO Max is the most recent addition to the competitive on-demand streaming market. Its monthly fee is pretty high compared to its competitors but it also gives you more bang for your buck than most: the entire Warner content library, covering everything from The Criterion Collection to Wonder Woman. And it has a long list of upcoming original content worth waiting for, set to be released in the near future.
HBO Max is currently only available in the US, with its original content released through existing channels – HBO Now, HBO Go, and others – in the rest of the world, too.
$4.99 a month with “some ads”, $7.99 a month “ad-free”
The vast majority of streaming services create content with larger screens – computer monitors, smart TVs, some even movie theaters – in mind. Not the brand new streaming service called Quibi: it plans to provide binge-worthy programming for those watching on smartphone screens.
Quibi is a short-form content provider, planning to pour more than 8,500 10-minute “quick bites” (episodes) on its viewers in the near future. The list of series it plans to launch is impressive, covering everything from a modern-day retelling of the classic series “The Fugitive” to the upcoming horror anthology series “Spielberg’s After Dark” that will only be available to watch after sunset.
Free with ads, $5 per month ad-free
Peacock is the elusive streaming service run by NBC Universal. It is currently only available to Xfinity Flex subscribers in the US – the rest of the country has to wait until mid-July to try it. Once gone public, it will have a free tier (ad-supported) and a “Premium” version with no ads.
Peacock will have everything from Twin Peaks to Tales from the Crypt, along with a series of brand new and original programs ranging from a reboot of the classic teen series “Saved by the Bell” to the modern-day retelling of Aldous Huxley’s “Brave New World”.