Netflix is undoubtedly the largest, most popular, and most reliable video-on-demand streaming service in the world presently, with 151 million paid subscribers worldwide in 2019, and 158 million when free trials are included.
Although the aforementioned figures are enough to send shivers down the spines of other existing VoD streaming platforms in the market, it has neither stopped them from operation, nor scare new services from entering the market. In fact, the mammoth success of Netflix which has yielded multiple billions of dollars every single year, has become one of the key factors that attract competitors and new investors to the video-on-demand streaming service market. Surveys have proven that more people spend time streaming contents from Netflix than watching traditional television.
While it is great to acknowledge the unmatched success and dominance of Netflix in the market, it is also nice to look into some of the best available Netflix alternatives currently in the market that can also keep you entertained throughout 2021, which is the actual point of this article.
Below are the 10 best Netflix alternatives in 2021 – this includes both paid and legally free alternatives.
1. Amazon Prime Video
Probably the best Netflix alternative on the list, Amazon Prime Video offers a plethora of popular movies and TV shows, with plenty of great original contents. In addition to that, the streaming service offer a top-notch user experience, video quality, and premium services. Amazon Prime Video is available worldwide except for Mainland China, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, and Syria. Subscription pricing varies for different countries, but it will set you back AED16 per month in the UAE, $8.99 per month in the USA, and £5.99 per month in the UK. If you’re an Amazon Prime member, the Prime Video service is included in your subscription. You can try Amazon Prime Video for free for 30 days here.
In terms of popularity and contents, Hulu goes toe-to-toe with Netflix and Amazon Prime Video. The Walt Disney-owned video-on-demand streaming platform offers a vast collection of its original contents as well as the latest movies and TV shows, in Hollywood, Bollywood, Anime Series, and more. Streaming on Hulu costs less than streaming on Netflix, which is why it is a great Netflix alternative; but it is only available in the United States. Hulu subscription plans starts as low as $5.99 per month. You can try Hulu free for the first month here.
How can we not have the platform that brings us the ever so popular Power series on this list? STARZPLAY is operated by Starz Inc., which is owned by Lionsgate, and is available in Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East. The platform has grown to become one of the biggest Netflix competition in the Middle East, thanks to its high-quality and highly sought-after contents which includes Hollywood and Arabic Movies and TV shows, as well as original contents. Subscription prices vary according to the country, but in the UAE it will set you back $10.99 monthly inclusive of 5% VAT. You can try STARZPLAY free for the first 30 days here.
Wavo is another great video-on-demand streaming service which is only available in the Middle East and North African region. The OSN-powered online streaming service is offered to select countries namely: Algeria, Bahrain, Chad, Djibouti, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Palestinian Territory, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen. Subscription prices vary according to the geographic location, but UAE subscription will cost you $4.99 monthly. You can try Wavo here.
Of all the video-on-demand streaming services on this list, Disney+ is the latest to enter the market. Even though it launched on November 12, 2019, the new service was able to amass over 10 million subscribers in a single day. Disney Plus is owned and operated by the Direct-to-Consumer & International division of The Walt Disney Company, thereby making it the exclusive home for your favorite movies and TV shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic. For now the service is available in the United States, Canada, Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand, and Puerto Rico; hopefully the list will expand in 2021. Disney+ subscription starts from $6.99 per month, and you can check it out here.
MUBI is a distributor as well as subscription-based streaming OTT service which offers online streaming of a hand-curated selection of films, including original productions. While MUBI doesn’t offer plenty of contents like Netflix, it is still a great alternative to consider in 2021, because it is one of the few online streaming services that put a lot of effort into curating the best classic, independent and award-winning films from around the world. The platform only has a rotating collection of 30 titles that change daily; a new movie everyday and the added movie spends 30 days before it is removed and replaced with another one. MUBI is available in over 195 countries around the world, and every country has its own unique line-up. MUBI membership costs $10.99 per month, and you can try out the service free for 7 days here.
7. HBO Now
HBO Now has sealed its spot as one of the top streaming platforms in the video-on-demand market, thanks to its excellent video quality and groundbreaking series like the Game of Thrones, Sex and the City, Boardwalk Empire, and many more. Although only available in the U.S at the moment, WarnerMedia-owned HBO Now is an awesome alternative to Netflix, if you love TV shows, documentaries and kids program. HBO Now subscription starts from $14.99 per month and you can try it out here.
Owned by Sony Pictures, Crackle is a completely free online video streaming platform that offers original contents as well as programming acquired from other companies, making it the best legally free Netflix alternative in the market in 2021. There’s a catch though, Crackle is ad supported, hence one has to sit through a 30-second commercial before the movie or show starts, followed by up to three additional ads for shows and nine for movies longer than an hour and a half. In addition to that, the platform is restricted to only North America, Central America, and South America; if you’re located in one of those regions proceed here to start streaming.
9. CBS All Access
If you’re into CBS shows like NCIS, Blue Bloods, The Big Bang Theory and its likes, and you’re located in the United States, Canada or Australia, then CBS All Access is a great Netflix alternative to consider. Although the over-the-top video-on-demand streaming platform does not offer as much content as Netflix, it still boasts plenty of great movies and TV shows including classics like The Bold and the Beautiful and originals like The Twilight Zone. Combined, there are over 10,000 episodes available. Pricing in the U.S. starts at $5.99 per month and goes up to $9.99 if you want an ad-free experience. To try out CBS All Access, proceed here.
PopcornFlix is another great Netflix alternative that is completely free and legal. PopcornFlix is an ad-supported over-the-top service that lets you stream videos of feature-length movies and webisodes online. The platform is home to varieties of movie types; ranging from drama to comedy, action, adventure and more. While PopcornFlix may not be as robust as Netflix in regards to contents and video quality offered, it is still an excellent alternative to explore, considering the fact that you don’t need to pay a dime for it. Currently the service is only accessible in the United States and Canada, but they’ve got plans to launch in more countries in the future. To start streaming for free on PopcornFlix, head over here.