The streaming services have seen a spike in their subscription recently. The main reason for this growth of streaming service is attributed to worldwide lockdown. People are subscribing to OTT (Over The Top) platforms to keep themselves entertained. There is a long list of streaming players in the US but Hotstar, Netflix, Amazon Prime Videos, FuboTV, SlingTV and Hulu are the most popular. Generally, it is tough to choose the best OTT platforms. Here in this post, I am going to help you to choose the right platform for you.
When you are considering to subscribe to any streaming service, you need to figure out your requirements first. For instance, some people subscribe to OTT to watch sports leagues like IPL, NBA, Soccer leagues while others subscribe for web series, movies, TV shows and documentaries. Once you have set your priorities, you will have 3 to 4 OTT platforms to choose from.
Thereafter, you will need to compare all the streaming players on the below parameters.
How to compare Streaming service
To choose the best streaming app, you will need to compare all six parameters.
- Subscription Plans
- Content available
- Content Quality
- No of screens
- Supporting device
- Deals and offers
Let us discuss each point one by one in detail.
Streaming service subscription Plan
Subscription plan pricing is one of the most important factors. You need to check the flexibility in plans. For instance, Hotstar has only one annual plan in the USA that costs $49.99 a year. There is no Hotstar monthly plan in the USA. If you want to watch only IPL matches for two months, you will need to pay for the entire year.
Therefore, check no of plans available. It helps you to save money by tailoring the subscription plan as per your requirement. Also, check Adds-on availability. Adds-on is very useful to upgrade plans at a reasonable price.
There should be a free trial of a week or a month to test the features and content of the apps. It is better if any free trial is available.
This is the second step in choosing the right platform. The content you want to access is available in all the filtered apps, look for additional content being offered in the subscription bundle. Check out channels list, web series, sports channels, TV shows and compare all these in detail. Most of the OTT platforms have geo-restrictions to access the content. Like Hotstar offers Disney plus in India while it is not available in Hotstar US package.
Moreover, subscription plans are country-specific. if you sign up for Netflix India and travel to the USA, your subscription will not work there and you will need to sign up for Netflix USA separately. The CuriosityStream is the only OTT app having no geo-restriction enabled. CuriosityStream subscription plans remain active when you travel from one country to another.
Therefore, check available content and geo-restriction in this step.
Streaming service Quality
Check out in which format the content is available. Almost all the streaming service offers up to HD quality streaming. There are a few OTT platforms like FuboTV & CuriosityStream offering 4K or UHD (Ultra High Definition) streaming. However, to watch content in 4K, your device must be compatible with 4K streaming.
Streaming quality also becomes important to analyze the data consumption. UHD and HD consume more internet data than SD (Standard Quality). If you go with UHD, 4K streaming, you will need to adjust your data package too.
No of Screens
One of the significant factors to analyze the actual cost of the subscription is no of screens available. Streaming services offer the option to access digital content on multiple screens simultaneously. It helps in subscription cost reduction.
For instance, FuboTV has an Add-on Family Share that costs $4.99 a month. By opting into this Add-on, you can watch FuboTV on three screens concurrently. It reduces costs three times. The FuboTV base Package that was costing $54.99 a month, will cost you $20 per month per screen.
Similarly, other platforms offer this feature. If you are comfortable sharing your streaming account with someone, this is the best way to save money.
You have checked the streaming quality and no of screens in previous steps. You must check that it should be compatible with your device. Generally, the OTT platform should support a web browser, android, IOS, streaming adapters like Google Chromecast, Amazon FireTV sticks and Roku.
If it is not supporting streaming adapters, it will be tough to watch your favorite programs on the smart TV. Supporting multiple devices help watching content at any time and any place.
Deals & offers
Deals and offers play an important role in online shopping. Streaming services also offer deals, discounts to promote their services. You should check out past and active promotions of the OTT apps you have selected so far. This can help you to save a good amount on the subscription.
For instance, SlingTV offers a $50 Amazon FireTV stick with the two-months subscription. You will not need to buy streaming adapters to cast screen on a smart TV if you avail of such promotions. You can check out Hotstar US deals and offers by clicking here. Therefore, check for deals and offers before signup.
These are the steps that can help you to select the best streaming service at a reasonable cost in 2020. All these parameters are applicable to all OTT platforms. One more advice is to take a free trial to test all the features. In case free trial is not available, there would be a refund policy within 3 days or a week.
You should check the cancellation policy before signup. You should continue your subscription after free trial once you are fully satisfied. Otherwise, there is no dearth of streaming service now. Go, check out and select the best one that fulfills your all requirements.