There are more streaming video services today than TV stations I could watch as a kid. I lived between Phoenix and Tucson, Arizona and I could watch TV stations from both. It still added up to only 10, which included one UHF station (the rest were VHF).
Like traditional cable TV, there can be hundreds of “channels” on streaming video services and yet nothing to watch.
The streaming video services I’m talking about are those that are based in the United States or where the United States seems to be the primary market. Other countries have their own. I can watch a few other services when I’m in the Philippines. I can also watch the limited Netflix service (unless I spring for an expensive VPN to watch the USA version).
Some streaming video services are subscription-based and some are free, with advertisements. I don’t think I can list all of them, but these are the ones I’ve found so far:
The streaming video providers charge too much for too little. If you want to watch Game of Thrones, you have to subscribe to HBO Now. If you want to watch Star Trek: Discovery, you have to subscribe to CBS All Access. You may not be interested in anything else either service has to offer. I won’t subscribe to any premium service for that very reason.
It was so much easier (and cheaper if you think about it) to use regular cable TV. Then Netflix had to come in and upset the apple cart. And then Amazon wanted to play. We’re almost in the same boat we were in with cable TV, but spending more because of the decentralization.
My older son, Joseph, is subscribed to both Netflix and Amazon Prime, and yet he rarely watches anything on either service. I probably watch Netflix more than he does. My younger son, Jonathan, is subscribed to both as well. He actually watches movies and series on both services. I know I don’t watch as much as he does.
Although the free streaming video services have some decent content, the frequent advertisements can be extremely annoying. It’s like that with regular YouTube, Tubi and Pluto TV. I’ve tried watching long videos on each and I can’t take it for long. I can usually watch just one thing before calling it quits.
My wife, Josie, watches Filipino content on her phone every day. I don’t watch a lot of TV and I can’t justify a subscription to anything. By the time something I like shows up on any streaming video service, I’ve already seen it elsewhere. And I don’t like very much to begin with.
I’m posting the comments I received on the original article verbatim:
Know what you mean about nothing on - I just cancelled Netflix at the end of January after 11 years. Their ‘Netflix Originals’ are mostly just awful and really, how could any production company screw up a series with a golden premise like a woman’s prison (Orange is the New Black) and yet Netflix did AND repeated the error for multiple seasons. Unwatchable, although I made a great effort
Or release a series with Miami Steve Van Zandt as a mob boss in Norway (Lilyhammer) - He should have known better and stuck with the Boss
For shame, for shame, allowing ads to run on YouTube - AdBlock Plus and NoScript are a computer user’s best friends.
I’ll probably start using adblock something on YouTube. It’s really annoying when I get interrupted 10 times in 30 minutes.
I read this article again since it was at the top of the list and found that I must have read it before since when I clicked to comment, I saw my previous comments - don’t remember, must be getting “old-timers disease”
Since then, I’ve signed up for Amazon Prime and I’m amazed by the depth of their TV and movie catalog - for me, when considering the other benefits of Amazon Prime and the fact that Prime Video has no commercials, USD 119 a year is cheap. I’ve spent too many hours over my life watching movies and TV and thought I was aware of most everything, but I stand in awe of just how much Amazon has, a high proportion of which is A and B list material.
And again, shame, shame for allowing ads to run on YouTube (there are some deserving channels I support by whitelisting them in my adblocker - I’m not totally heartless. Just wish Google would quit with the political ads, social commentary ads, and the depressing ads)
Whether it’s services I’ve missed, a correction to be made or you just feel the need to comment on this post, please do. It’s difficult to keep up-to-date with the way things change so often.