Technology is dynamic in nature, which basically means that it changes over time. What stays today, may not be seen after some years! The perfect example of this is VCR devices which were taken over by Television to a very large extent. There are also some technology that doesn’t fade away completely, radio, being one of them.
In many developing countries like India, television was the only main source of entertainment until a few years back. We had to see, what the television channels wanted to show us. There was freedom to switch between channels but was it in a full sense proper freedom similar to what we get to experience today on the online streaming platforms? Definitely not!
The television industry is definitely great and big but it doesn’t cater to every class of audience. As people stopped finding anything worth their time over the television, they shifted to free video streaming platforms like YouTube or preferred pirated content through illegal websites or torrents. The surprise factor is that in all this also there were actually many people who got attracted to such third party services not because of the free bait, but due to the mere fact that major quality content wasn’t present in their region for them to consume.
Somewhere between all this, online video streaming platforms emerged and the people who were ready to invest some money to watch valuable and quality content, bought the subscriptions. Slowly the numbers multiplied and the rest is history. This was basically a short journey of the rise of the video streaming services.
In this article, we will be taking a look at some of the most popular and best streaming channels to exist to date. It’s important to know that these are our preferences based on a variety of factors including research, reviews, criticism, etc. After compiling all of the factor results, we arrive at the below conclusion list of
video streaming services like YouTube.
1) Prime Video
In the recent few years, Prime Video, owned by the giant, Amazon, has given a tough competition to other similar services like Netflix, Hulu, etc. The Prime Video is not only a video streaming subscription but it’s a part of the whole Prime subscription which provides you other benefits over Amazon-like early access to lightning deals, free one day or two-day delivery option, to name a few.
Amazon Prime subscription offers you a lot of things at quite an affordable price, and probably that’s the reason that it has surpassed Netflix in terms of subscriber base. The platform offers movies and shows in both English and regional languages. One can come across a lot of local content on Prime Video, where some movies are uploaded right after certain weeks of release.
If you would like to discover fresh talents then Prime Video is your ultimate destination. You are free to download content including movies and TV shows, in 4K UHD and HDR. The thing that disappointed us was that we directly couldn’t watch content on a large screen due to lack of the Chromecast feature for the apps of Android and iOS. Still, there’s another way to accomplish the task and that’s by getting Amazon Fire TV and creating a mirror of your Android device.
Netflix is known for its originals that started all the way back in the US. If we focus upon the content factor, then Netflix definitely wins the round quite easily! It’s said that the platform was the first online streaming service to upload episodes of various shows and series in one go, saving the valuable time of the users.
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Netflix doesn’t follow a single subscription plan, instead, there are multiple ones which mainly focus upon the number of screens at a time, and video streaming quality. It sports cross-device technology which means that you can pause content on one device and continue it on the other from where you had previously left. There are a lot of filter options that can help you to narrow down the search results.
It supports all the major video quality formats, right from 144P to 4K video streaming and HDR feature. The company gives you the freedom to access the content as per your convenience and quality preferences based upon the subscription plan that you have chosen. It promotes offline downloading of content, making it easier for the users to view the content later on. In short, it’s a great app which can seem to be a bit costly but if you are a fan of binge-watching original titles then Netflix is a must for you.
Hooq is an online video service platform that isn’t quite popular with a lot of audiences. Many would-be unaware of Hooq and therefore would doubt the service, but what if you turn out to be wrong? The main reason the online video streaming platform couldn’t be successful was due to the fact that it was way ahead of its time. It landed a little early when the demand for online streaming wasn’t that mainstream.
It sports relatively a fine user interface with almost 10,000 titles to consume from! If you step out of your regular video streaming services, you will come to know that site and apps like Hooq have a lot of exclusive content to offer, in this case, the DC shows including The Flash, Arrow, to name a few.
Aside from the normal subscription plan, there’s a unique feature that sets this service different from its competitors, and i.e. movie rental feature which will give users access to title/titles that they prefer to watch. The only downside is that the movie rental option can be a little costly which can be opted only with an active subscription.
Hotstar is for the Indian in you! It’s owned by Star India, where the service mainly focuses upon the Indian movies and shows. It’s also the official broadcasting app for Indian cricket events. During the season of Indian Premier League (IPL), the app becomes a regular destination for the sports lovers. When we look at the number of users, it’s not shocking to see that Hotstar has surpassed both international giants, Netflix and Prime Video.
It doesn’t only focus upon local content, but even on International content which consists of great shows from leads like HBO, ABC, Showtime, etc. If you are looking for live streaming or wanted to know how to watch TV online for free, then you should consider Hotstar as it has a huge database of live sports and news channels.
The platform’s regular and free to view content is available for everyone, without the need for registration. But not to forget about the ads that can trouble you in between your videos. On the other side, there’s the premium subscription, which consists mainly of International movies and shows. The only thing that worries some users about Hotstar is that it runs on Adobe Flash, which may ignite security issues.
Jio is the Internet carrier that brought revolution in the telecom sector within a matter of one year only. It’s said to be the sole reason for the expansion of the digital world in India. It gave such a tough competition to others that only a handful of players could survive in the market. If you are a Jio subscriber, then you are automatically eligible to use JioCinema, a service provided by the telecom giant.
The content offered by the service mostly caters to the Indian audience but there are some International flicks also for the International content loving audience. There are separate sections for everything, even for music clips and videos. One is free to download the content on mobile devices for offline viewing. If we take a look at the quality of videos, it’s generally specified as per the network speed.
Jio started up with lots of its services side by side, to keep its user base intact and looks like they were successful in achieving this task to a large extent. The only downside is that the free streaming service is available only for the Jio subscribers. If you are a Jio user and aren’t still enjoying the benefits of the extra services like JioCinema then start using them right away!
The various video streaming services are trying their level best to bring a revolution in the media industry. It looks like it’s only a matter of a few years before television will be almost extinct. Some television channels have understood this pretty well and that’s why they have started to even branch out towards the digital spectrum.
Netflix is known for its original content and it doesn’t compromise much with its prices, whereas Prime Video is trying to bring in as much local content as possible in the most effective price model. The remaining online video services, JioCinema, Hotstar and Hooq, seem to be a pretty decent option considering the price and content offered. But we have to admit that at the end of the day, it’s great services like Prime Video and Netflix that steals the show.
If you ask us to choose between one, then it becomes a little confusing as these are our top selected picks and further competition between these services will only lead to more confusion as everyone is good in its own aspect, considering the pros and cons. But still, if we have to pick one, then it will be Prime Video as of now. What’s your favourite pick? Let us know in the comments down below.