Streaming movies and series has revolutionized the way we consume media. Previous generations had to watch certain programs at specific times and days because there was no other option. Today we can choose not only what we want to watch, but also how and when we watch it. This shift has been caused by streaming services such as Netflix and HBO. We believe the following streaming services are among the best:
- Amazon Prime
- HBO (Max)
- Crunchy roll
Unfortunately, not all of these streaming services are available in all countries, but you can still use them with a VPN. A VPN provider that you could use for this is ExpressVPN. Are you also tired of all those high costs for digital television or cable? Or maybe you’re trying to take a critical look at the subscriptions you’ve taken out with different platforms. Whatever the situation, we’re here to help you determine the best place to watch TV and movies. Here’s our ranking of the best streaming services right now.
We’ve looked at both paid and free platforms so you can choose the options that best suit your needs. We will also talk about the pros and cons of each platform. Not all of the streaming services we’ve mentioned are available by default. You could solve these potential limitations with a VPN while streaming. We will come back to this later.
Live streaming versus on-demand services
You can divide video streaming services into two categories: live streaming and on-demand streaming. Live streaming is actually similar to what you have with digital television or cable, except it goes over the internet. Live streaming services use an app for their services instead of a box that you have to connect to your television. If you go for live streaming, you can only watch certain content at a specific time and channel.
- On-demand streaming is what many people think of when you talk about streaming services. This includes services such as Netflix, Disney+, Prime Video and Videoland. Streaming on-demand means you can watch what you want, when you want. As long as the program you want to see is available at the service.
- To indicate which of the services below are live streaming services and which are on-demand, we have always mentioned this at the top to avoid confusion. Also, some of the services are not (yet) available in , so they can only be accessed with a VPN. This will also be mentioned at the top.
The best streaming services
The list below is presented in no particular order. We discuss some platforms that are available worldwide, some good options that are popular abroad, and the best streaming services in the world. Tastes differ, so we’ll leave it further up to you which of these options is the very best!”
Netflix – Best streaming service overall
On-demand streaming service starting at €7.99 per month.
Netflix is the streaming service that has changed how we watch TV and movies. With an extensive selection of original content and a constantly growing offering, Netflix is ééone of the most popular streaming services. The service changes its offerings regularly, which unfortunately can mean that something you were planning to watch is suddenly gone. But you can also often discover new things.
- You can watch Netflix on almost any device, which means you basically always have the service at hand. This is not true for all platforms. The different subscription options also mean that there is almost always an option for your budget and needs.
- The recommendations the service makes are unmatched by other platforms and can be a great way to find new programs’s and movies. You can also create different profiles on an account, so that the algorithm doesn’t suddenly start recommending things that your mother would like to watch.
- One drawback is that it costs quite a lot of money monthly, especially if you don’t use it enough. Also, not all content is available everywhere in the world, but only in certain countries. And because of the algorithm, there will always be movies and series that you don’t know are on Netflix, because they are never recommended.
|Large selection of movies and TV shows||Compared to other services, the costs are high|
|Easy to use interface on all devices||The offer is continuously adjusted, so content sometimes disappears|
|Various subscription options||Hard to find content outside your recommendations|
|Good algorithm for recommendations|
|Up to five different profiles on one account|
Disney+ – Best option for families with young children
On-demand streaming service from €6.99 per month.
Disney+ is one of the newer streaming services and features a collection of classic Disney movies and TV shows. The service also offers a number of new shows, mainly for children and families. Disney+ gives you access to five different categories, namely Pixar, Disney, Marvel, Star Wars and National Geographic.
- This diversity also makes the platform attractive to people who don’t just want to watch traditional Disney content, especially since it also includes Fox programs such as The Simpsons.
- You can download content so you can watch it offline later. Disney+ is also available on devices such as Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Roku, Chromecast, and smart TVs. You can also view the service via your browser, smartphone, tablet and some game consoles.
- The limitations of Disney+ can be found in the gaps that the offer leaves behind. We have also noticed that some programs are displayed in the wrong order (such as the new DuckTales, for example).
|Not very expensive compared to other services||There seem to be some well-known films missing in the offer|
|Many programs suitable for all ages||Some episodes are in the wrong order|
|Large selection of classics|
Prime Video – A lot of offer for little money at Amazon Prime
On-demand streaming service from €2.99 per month.
- In comes a subscription to Prime Video by default as part of an Amazon Prime account. That means that in addition to access to the video content, you also get free fast delivery of your orders from Amazon. The first 30 days of your Prime account are free, after that you only pay €2.99 per month.
- You can use Prime Video on various devices, such as your computer or smartphone. They have recently added profiles so you can personalize your account and only see recommendations based on your viewing habits.
- The interface of Prime Video isn’t great, but they do have a huge selection of movies and series. The original content on offer is also very good and is a huge plus for the platform.
- A number of drawbacks of the streaming service are the bugs in the browser version, which make it slightly less user-friendly. Amazon also shows commercials for their programs before your movie or series starts. A lot of extra content has also been blocked, because you have to take out an additional subscription first.
|Good original content||Dated interface with bugs|
|Large selection of films and series||The extra content and channels cost more|
|Very cheap with an Amazon Prime membership||Not available on all devices|
Hulu – The platform for American television
On-demand streaming service starting at €5 per month.
Live TV with on-demand streaming for €46 per month.
Only available with a VPN.
- If you like to watch American television, Hulu is definitely worth considering. You can’t only stream on-demand with this streaming service, but also watch live TV. With this subscription, you get access to more than 60 channels, including sports, entertainment and news channels.
- The cheapest subscription costs about’n €5, but if you want an ad-free variant, you pay about€10. You can also choose to buy extra storage space and an “unlimited screens”package. You pay about €16 for both or €12.50 for ééone of the two. Other extra options include Live TV for €46, HBO for €12.50 and Showtime for €7.50.
- The biggest drawback of this streaming service is that you have to deal with commercials on the cheapest package. Also, we have found that some older series are not fully complete and sometimes miss a season.
|Affordable on-demand streaming||Required to watch commercials|
|Large range of TV programs||Older offer may not be complete|
|Mid-season series are also available||Live TV is quite pricey|
Crackle – Best free streaming service for series and movies
Free on-demand streaming service.
Only available with a VPN.
- Crackle is a free streaming service with a library of series and movies. As with many other services, Crackle’s offerings change regularly. You will have to get used to the commercials while watching movies and series, because that’s how the platform makes money.
- You can access the platform on mobile phones, in browsers, on game consoles and on a number of TVs. All content on Crackle is available in 720p.
- Since it’s free, there’s really no reason not to take a look. There are a surprising amount of programs available and there is even some original content for you to watch.
- Besides the commercials, Crackle’s biggest drawback is that the interface is a bit dated. There are few recommendations and only a few categories into which the content is divided.
|Free streaming service||You can’t get out of commercials|
|Varied offer||Fast-changing catalog|
|Original content||Not available without VPN.|
Peacock – NBC’s Best Free Streaming Service
On-demand streaming service with a free subscription.
Only available with a VPN.
At Peacock you can choose from three different subscriptions. The first option is free, gives access to about 13,000 hours of content and has commercials. The second option, the “Premium” option, also has commercials but has about 20,000 hours of content and gives you the option to watch some sports live. The last option is “Premium Plus”, which gives you all of the premium option, but without the ads.
- You can watch Peacock in the app on Android and iOS devices, as well as on game consoles and via various media players. Currently it is not possible to watch Peacock via Amazon Fire TV or Roku, but that could change in the future.
- Peacock was set up by the American NBC and is still fairly new. They offer several options for subscriptions so you can choose what suits you. There is also a parental control option, which makes the service very attractive for families with young children.
- There are also some limitations. For example, it is not possible to download programs to watch offline at a later time. You can’t stream in 4K quality either. There are also some gaps in the offer.
|Ability to parental controls||Gaps in the offer (Friends, Seinfeld and The Office)|
|Three plans to choose from||Not much own offer|
|Live sports||Not possible to stream in 4K|
|Popular NBC shows such as Parks and Recreation and King of Queens||No download option|
|Only available with a VPN|
Tubi – Best free movie streaming service
Free on-demand streaming service.
Only available with a VPN.
Tubi is another free streaming service where you can watch movies and series on demand. You will also have to deal with advertisements on this platform. This service offers a number of popular movies, but you will also find TV series here. The interface looks simple and is easy to use. There is also a search bar with which you can quickly find what you are looking for.
- You can stream Tubi on mobile devices and in your browser. If you have a ChromeCast, you can easily cast Tubi to your TV. Other media players, such as Roku, Apple TV and Android TV, also work with the platform. You can also use the app on a smart TV and on game consoles.
- Just like with Crackle, there’s really no reason not to try Tubi, as it costs nothing. The range of series is not very large, but there are quite a few movies available to stream. You also have the option of parental control with the platform and the offer keeps changing.
- Disadvantages are that you can’t download content so you can watch it offline later. Also, you can’t stream in a resolution higher than 720p. But if there’s a specific movie you’re looking for, Tubi is definitely a good free option to consider.
|Free streaming service||Limited range in series|
|Large selection of movies||Streaming resolution is up to 720p|
|Easy to use||No download option|
|Parental controls are possible|
Crunchy roll – Best anime streaming service
Free on-demand streaming service with paid options.
Anime fans will feel right at home with Crunchyroll’s offerings. With a library of over 1200 options, it’s dé spot for series such as Attack on Titan, One-Punch Man and Hunter X Hunter. The platform also offers some original content.
- You can view some of the content without creating an account, but then you won’t have full access. The cheapest option for an account costs €6.70 per month. You will then be rid of the advertisements and have access to all content. For an extra €2 you can also sign up for a “mega fan” account which means you can watch on four screens at once and download your content so it’s available offline later.
- You can reach the platform via your browser, but also on your smartphone or game console. The interface is a bit dated, so it is sometimes difficult to find something.
|Great for anime fans||Advertisements if you don’t pay for an account|
|Original content available||Only offline downloads with the “mega fan” option|
|Two subscription options||Dated interface that is not user-friendly|