Netflix vs Hulu – the age old question of which is the better streaming service. But let’s not forget about Amazon Prime and the new hybrid streaming/disc rental service from RedBox.
There’s no one service that is head and shoulders better than the rest. Read on and see which is the best for you.
But before plunking down some of your hard-earned cash, browse all of the free movies and free TV shows you can stream online. There are also several services to rent movies and TV shows online without paying a monthly subscription.
Netflix vs Hulu vs Amazon Prime vs Redbox Instant:
- Criteria Explained:
- Selection: How many titles are available to stream? Especially how many new releases.
- Devices: What devices are you able to use the service on besides PC’s? ’Everything’ is defined as: iPhone, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire, Xbox, Playstation, Wii, Apple TV, Roku, and smart TV’s. Some services actually support many more devices like Windows Phone, Nook, DVR’s, home theatre systems, etc.
- Price: The monthly subscription cost.
- Extras: What extras (if any) are included with the subscription.
- Bottom line: Who is the ideal user for each service.
If you’re looking for the most titles available on the most devices, then Netflix is your choice. It’s also the only place to get some great new shows like House of Cards and Arrested Development.
Hulu Plus has tons of recent TV shows and a pretty limited selection of older movies. A lot of titles on Hulu are free without a subscription, but you’ll be forced to watch on a PC unless you subscribe. Hulu is heavy on network shows from ABC, NBC, and Fox. The most recent episodes of these shows (and CBS) are already free online. Hulu Plus does have access to some shows from cable networks, but it is limited. If you just want to watch movies and already keep up to date on your favorite shows, then a Hulu Plus subscription is probably not for you.
Amazon Prime streaming is a little cheaper than the other offerings. The selection isn’t as good as Netflix, but it does include free 2-day shipping on tons of products from Amazon. Amazon is also investing in some original series. We’ll have to wait and see if any are as good as House of Cards.
Get a 1-Month Free Trial to Redbox Instant™ by Verizon with a subscription (or “with sign up”). Receive access to a Streaming Library of Hits and 4 DVD Credits every month for rentals at your local Redbox kiosk. Once your free trial expires, membership costs $8 per month plus taxes. That matches Netflix’s Unlimited Streaming package.
This may be a good option if you rent a few new releases on DVD each month and also want to stream some movies.
All of the above services have free trials. Sign up for them and see which one you like best. You may find you’d like to alternate between two or three every few months. If you want to see what movies are currently on the different streaming services, check out this site called Can I Stream It. It’s a very handy tool to see what movies are available on different streaming services and online movie rental stores. Of course, you could pay for rentals as you go from Redbox kiosks, iTunes, or VUDU.