The first step in cutting the cord is deciding which type of viewer you are. Do you want to watch live TV or are you more of an on-demand kind of person?
Most people fall into the live TV category. If you want to find out which streaming service offering live TV is the best choice for you, check out our article and comparison chart here.
But if you're more of an on-demand person, or you're just looking to supplement other services, we'll go over your options so you can make an informed decision.
What to look for in a streaming service
The main reason people cut the cord in the first place is to save money, but streaming services have been upping prices lately. If you subscribe to several, you might not be saving money at all. Don't give up hope, you can still cut the cord on the cheap by using these 5 sites for streaming TV for free.
There are several factors to look into before choosing a streaming service to subscribe to. How much does it cost, which offers 4K content and which streaming devices are compatible with each service (Psst! Speaking of cost, here's what streaming companies don't want you to know about the real cost of cord-cutting)?
Those are just a few of the basics. What it might actually come down to is the content each service provides and if they have exclusive programming that you can only watch through them. Let's take a look at some of the major players, and what each offers, so you can get the most bang for your buck.
Netflix is the granddaddy of all streaming services and it's come a long way since the days of having a DVD periodically shipped to you through the mail. Netflix started its streaming service in 2007 and hasn't looked back. It dominated the market for years with original programming like "House of Cards," "Stranger Things" and "Black Mirror."
A basic Netflix subscription will run you $8.99/month, a standard subscription costs $12.99/month and premium is $15.99/month. If you can't live without 4K content, you're going to want to choose the premium option.
To see other important Netflix features, click on the link at the end of this article to look at our on-demand streaming services comparison chart. It has everything you need to know about all these services in one place.
Hulu has options that'll meet the needs of every cord-cutter. It offers an on-demand streaming service but also has one that comes with live TV. For our purposes here, we'll just look at the on-demand options.
It'll cost you $5.99/month for the Hulu plan that comes with ads. There is also a plan that lets you watch shows without ads that costs $11.99/month. Hulu offers exclusive content including "Freakish," "Light as a Feather," "The Path" and more. Like Netflix, Hulu recently started offering content for offline viewing, which is a big deal for travelers.
Disney+ sent shock waves throughout the industry when the streaming service was announced. That's because it's going to have tons of exclusive content. Click or tap here to read all about the buzz.
Not only will you find content from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, National Geographic and the Star Wars universe here, but there will be plenty of never-before-seen original feature films, series, short-form content and documentaries. These include "Star Wars: The Mandalorian," "Lady and the Tramp," "Marvel Studios: Loki" and more.
The price also has people talking. You can subscribe for less than $7/month or you can pay for an entire year for just $69.99.
Speaking of costs, cable prices have been out of control for years. The companies behind these bills are always claiming costs are rising due to certain networks charging more to carry them. But there is more to the story. Find out why cable companies are adding hundreds in hidden fees to your bill every year and how to avoid them by clicking here.
Amazon Prime Video
If you're an Amazon Prime member, surprise! You already have access to Prime Video. If you're not a Prime member you can rent or purchase content from the Prime Video catalog.
Amazon Prime memberships cost $12.99/month or $119 annually. Prime Video offers tons of original content including "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel," "The Grand Tour," "Transparent," "Homecoming," "Sneaky Pete" and more.
Apple TV+ costs $4.99/month; however, customers who purchase any new iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Mac or iPod touch can enjoy one year of Apple TV+ for free.
It has original content including “The Morning Show,” starring Jennifer Aniston and Steve Carrell, and "Defending Jacob," starring former "Captain America" star Chris Evans. Apple also says new shows will be added monthly.
As we said earlier, we have a handy comparison chart showing some of the top features for on-demand streaming services. You'll be able to compare prices, find out which devices are compatible with each service, see who offers 4K content and more. On our chart we give you details on Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV+, CBS All Access, Disney+, HBO Max, HBO Now, Hulu and Netflix.
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