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2019 Options for Streaming Services

Today, most people would agree that television (TV) is a basic form of entertainment. Nearly everyone has access to some form of television service. And why not? In such a vibrant and busy world, TV can be an outlet for so many purposes. Everyday, TV is watched for relaxation, information, and pleasure. After a long day at work, coming home and switching on an old episode of your favorite show can be exactly what’s needed to unwind. If you feel like getting the latest updates on the current election, you’ll probably tune into your preferred news channel. And of course, the anticipation of the next episode of the show you’re currently hooked on can make the latest episode one of the most exciting events of the week.

For generations TV has worked its way into the fabric of cultures all over the world. But, unlike a couple decades ago, today there is no one set way to watch TV. Before, channels were limited, commercials were mandatory, service packages were expensive, and everything was on a rigid schedule that you either prepared for or missed entirely. However, now streaming television is mostly online and flexible, often uninterrupted, there are many cheap options compared to cable, and there are so many endless options for entertainment.

Here are 2019’s top streaming services:

#1 – Netflix ($8.99 a month)

At the top of the list is the powerhouse of online television streaming services: Netflix. At a low starting cost of $9/month, Netflix offers its subscribers unlimited access to thousands of movies and TV shows, all without any commercial interruptions. Much of the content provided is very popular, and includes many critically acclaimed movies and top-rated TV shows. Taking a different approach to TV shows than traditional cable, Netflix releases entire seasons at a time rather than single episodes, allowing users to squash anticipation with long nights of “binge” watching. Also, their entire online platform is customizable, providing recommendations based on which shows are watched frequently or given a thumbs up (liked).

#2 – Hulu ($5.99-$50.99 a month depending on your subscription)

For a service that feels closer to cable television—for one tenth the price—Hulu offers popular cable network shows, often releasing on Hulu only a day after they are aired on cable. However, Hulu is not restrained only to a cable-like structure, for it also offers seasons to watch as you please as well as many movies. At a base price of $6/month, Hulu is a very affordable option for watching many popular movies and TV titles. Hulu Live is another interesting feature, as it plays local news and a range of sports for an additional subscription fee.

#3 – FuboTV ($55 a month)

If watching sports is your favorite, then streaming FuboTV might be perfect for you. FuboTV is another option for those wanting to get away from their cable subscriptions, but it is specifically curated to the TV needs of a sports fan. FuboTV began as a streaming service for soccer before shifting to mimic a more traditional TV experience. It includes all of the important sports channels, but has been adding other top TV channels like the Discovery Channel to its repertoire. It is important to note that FuboTV does not currently carry ESPN or other channels owned by Disney, but it may be working to make these available in the future. FuboTV works like other live TV streaming devices with a limited storage space DVR function and the ability to operate over many different devices like Roku, Amazon Fire, and smart TVs. The basic FuboTV package costs $55 a month, and they offer a 30 channel add on for another $5 a month that provides access to more sports, entertainment, and lifestyle channels.

#4 – YoutubeTV ($50 a month)

Youtube TV is a great streaming platform to transition to from cable television. While it costs a bit more than other streaming services at $50 a month, Youtube TV gives you access to an extensive list of top live TV channels and includes coverage of local news networks like ABC, CBS, FOX, and NBC. Youtube TV also offers unlimited DVR storage and access, and is available through most of the top streaming devices including Roku, Apple TV, phones, web access, other smart TVs, and a variety of other platforms. Overall it is a great option for those who want access to many of their favorite channels and shows without being connected to a cable service provider.

#5- Philo ($20 a month)

For many, watching TV means having access to lots of your favorite networks. Philo is a great option for those that care little about watching sports or news, but want to retain their beloved networks. Philo provides popular channels such as AMC, BET, the Food Network, Comedy Central, VH1, and much more. At $20/month, Philo cuts the cost of many other TV subscription packages in half, and beats the cost of cable by a long shot.

Conclusion

Overall, content changes across services and each platform will provide a unique experience. Netflix is a great place to binge watch, but does not provide live or local channels. On the other hand, Hulu can provide a wider range of channels including live and local but lacks in overall stock. FuboTV is just breaking into regular TV but is still very sport-centered, while Philo and Youtube TV can give you access to many networks you’ve grown to love.

The best option might be to subscribe to multiple services, broadening what you can get out of your TV watching experience. Services can be added or removed at will so there’s no risk of crippling contracts. Compared to cable, which could easily cost over $100/month in order to provide the same content, trying any of 2019’s top streaming services will certainly satisfy. Why not try them all? Most of these streaming services also provide free trials, so you can get a feel for what service will be your new staple TV provider. You’re bound to find one, or a few, that give you the television experience you’re looking for.

August 21st, 2019 - Posted by | Entertainment | No Comments

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