Netflix is the best thing that’s happened in the space of modern entertainment. It costs a minimal amount and gives you access to an infinite number of shows that you like. It was a simple concept when it started, but now everybody is jumping on the train. Initially, Netflix had a great big library of shows from different networks, including HBO, NBC etc.
Market leaders saw this formula and thought to themselves. Huh? Why are my shows on Netflix when I can have my own streaming service and put all my shows over there?
From HBO to Disney to Amazon Prime, everyone offers their own respective service, but where does it end? With all our favourite shows no longer in a single place and scattered across different services, how is streaming different from cable TV? Let’s explore.
Netflix Is Falling
It started strong, but Netflix no longer has the bounty of content it once did. What’s worse is that you will have to pay a lot more money to watch all the same content you watched before. The golden age of streaming is coming to an end as we all enter the subscription era. What made Netlfix popular was its offering. A simple subscription plan, near-infinite number of movies and a price more affordable than cable.
But as the company grew, the price of the streaming service didn’t remain affordable for long. Netflix recently increased its subscription price in the global market in Dec 2020. Indian prices have remained unaffected as of yet, but how long will that last remains be seen.
According to The Observer, almost every major network in the US will have its separate streaming service by 2022. It means that our favourite content is no longer consolidated into one or two places but instead scattered across many different apps and subscriptions.
Similar to how back in the day, multiple channels had one or more of our favourite shows. So is that it? Is it the end for streaming services? Well, not quite.
Where Streaming Excels
Streaming excels in the fact that users have a choice. They can choose to watch their favourite program without annoying ads whenever they like. All they have to do is buy a subscription to their favourite service and start streaming their show.
And multiple subscription services now have a tier system. Most users watch their favourite shows on the mobile, so Netflix has an ultra-affordable plan specifically for that, and it costs less than half the cost of their most premium subscription.
And unlike cable, people can share a subscription service as well. They can share their Netflix ID and password with their friends or family and, in return, cut their streaming bill down.
Another thing that cable doesn’t have is versatility. You can only watch cable on your TV. There is no cable for your mobile, tablet, or computer. Provided you can stream TV channels on these devices, but they’re again a form of streaming only.
Streaming also gives you full control over which season or episode of a movie you want to watch. You can directly watch the last season of a show on a streaming service but not on cable TV, as you’d have to wait until it airs.
The Future of Streaming
Regardless of what anyone says, things will never devolve down to cable TVs. Streaming services caused an irreversible change in consumer behaviour, and nobody is going back to the “good old days.”
What’ll happen in the future for streaming services will be quite similar to network TVs. With all of our favourite content scattered across the platforms, they all will have to keep producing new shows to attract more eyeballs.
Enter the original shows. You may have seen an end screen at the end of a movie or series trailer stating “only on Amazon Prime” or “Exlusively on Netflix.” These are the original shows produced by said subscription.
For example, Castlevania, a video game adaption, is one of the most popular anime shows on Netflix. The said company produced it and now owns its digital rights. As a result, the show will remain only on the Netflix platform basically forever.
Another good example of this is “The Boys,” an original series owned by Amazon Prime, and hence it will remain on the platform for a long, long time.
As it turns out, the future of streaming services is actually good for the consumer. If there are more streaming services, they will likely produce more new original shows to keep attracting and retaining users. In the end, users will be spoiled with choice as nearly every major subscription service will have several of its exclusive shows and movies.
Recently, a Netflix made film, Roma, won the Oscars for the Best International Feature Film and the best director award.
What’s Good On Each Platform
Since we know streaming isn’t going anywhere, here is a list of good shows that every major subscription service has. So you can save your money and get the most out of what you spend.
On Disney Plus
Now its second season, the Mandalorian is a spin-off series from the Star Wars franchise. It is one of the most critically acclaimed shows on the platform and is a total treat for Star Wars fan.
The show starring Elizabeth Olsen as “Scarlett Witch” and Paul Bettany as “The Vision,” is a spin series from the massively popular Avengers movie franchise. It is set in an alternate timeline and has a lot of lore related to the main franchise.
The Falcon And The Winter Soldier
The new show recently completed its first season, and that too on high praise. Starring Jack Mackey and Sebastian Stan, the Falcon and The Winder Soldier is a spin-off series from the Captain America movies and picks up right after the Avengers Endgame finishes.
Despite the recent displacement of content from the platform, it still has too many shows and movies. One of those shows is Bojack Horseman. It’s a cartoon series that explores some very heavy themes of depression, guilt and emotional trauma.
Another popular series on Netlfix is Dark. It’s originally made in German, but you can watch it in English. The show involves time travel, murder and so on. The show can get confusing sometimes, so I’d suggest you avoid binge-watching it.
Invincible is a recently launched Animated show on Amazon Prime that revolves around the relationship between a father and his son, both imbued with near-infinite superpowers.
A crime web series involving a police inspector played by Jaideep Ahlawat explores some dark themes related to high profile crime and the underworld. Paatal Lok is a must-watch if you own Amazon Prime.