WASHINGTON (DC News Now) — From Hulu to HBO Max, Amazon Prime, Disney+ and more, the sheer number of streaming options could be overwhelming to consumers. Depending on how many people subscribe to, added costs could hurt wallets.
The basic plans for several platforms are not the same price. For example, Hulu and Disney+ charge $7.99 a month, while an Amazon Prime video membership costs $8.99 monthly. Netflix and HBO Max impose a $9.99 monthly fee. On the lower end? Paramount+ and Peacock charge $4.99 a month.
Consumers can save money if they opt for free streaming services, but they should expect to see advertisements, which are otherwise primarily avoided with premium plans for programs
Platforms like TUBI TV and Pluto TV offer free movies, shows, plus live television. Amazon’s Freevee and Peacock also offer free content. However, most high-demand new shows and movies are likely not offered for free.
Old sitcoms, golden age Hollywood, crime shows, game shows and more are among the content consumers can view without paying for them.
American University Professor Ronald Hill at the Kogod School of Business, signaled that cable is broadly losing steam where streaming is making gains.
“Streaming services are very, very powerful,” Hill said.
“We have two generations, and now a third generation coming in where they are very, very enabled by this, and their belief is that they should have access to the program they want immediately?,” he added.
Recent studies, including one from C+R research suggests consumers underestimate how much they pay for subscription services–lowballing this by roughly $130 monthly.
Hill said, “what happens to people is they get charged at different points in time. So, they’re not getting a bill, like a Verizon bill every month, where they can kind of catalog everything up where they are spending….” “…They [streaming subscriptions] are still considerably less [expensive] than what you would have to pay to have, kind of, the old fashioned cable service that came into our home.”
Consumers can use apps to help track exactly what they pay for and when, including Mint, Rocked Money and Honeydue.