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The best TV streaming services in 2024

From Netflix to Hulu, these are the best TV streaming services available today
With too many TV streaming services to choose from, it’s worth asking what option really works for you — or whether you need multiple subscriptions per month.
With too many TV streaming services to choose from, it’s worth asking what option really works for you — or whether you need multiple subscriptions per month.Vivian Le / NBC News

What is the best TV streaming service? A few years ago, that question would have been relatively simple — but the proliferation of on-demand platforms has quickly seen TV streaming turn into a very crowded market. Streamers, big studios and content providers are all looking to get in on the action, leveraging both beloved franchises and original shows to ensure their own market share. 

The tight competition has meant that streaming platforms are resorting to once-inconceivable measures, like introducing ads or outlawing password sharing. At the same time, there’s a huge array of streaming services to choose from, each with fantastic shows that cater to different interests. It’s harder than ever to crown a single service, with each platform offering its own strengths, weaknesses and distinct content libraries.

In this guide, we bring together our pick of the best TV streaming services, speaking to relevant experts and analysts to determine which service is right for you.

SKIP AHEAD  The best TV streaming services | How to choose the best TV streaming services

Selected.Our top picks

How we picked the best TV streaming services

  • Pricing. TV streaming services usually have various pricing plans, from basic ad-supported tiers to premium 4K options with a host of high-end features. In choosing services for this guide, we looked for those that catered to a variety of budgets or were likely to offer promotional bundles and discounts.
  • Content library. Content is king, as the saying goes, and you’re only going to subscribe to a specific streaming service if you want to watch the films and TV show programming that it offers. We looked at the platforms’ content libraries, covering their support of original programming, licensing of older shows and in some cases the third-party channels you can add to a subscription.
  • User interface. We considered the ease of use for each platform, the quality of its search function and how intuitive the interface is. 

The best TV streaming services


What we like about Netflix: Huge range of content, affordable ads tier and even Netflix games

Netflix is the original streaming service and it still has bucketloads of original programming, and caters to a huge number of viewers, whether you’re looking for reality TV, sci-fi, anime, cartoons, action or more. With a huge fleet of standup specials, it’s also become a streaming hub for comedy, too.

Netflix truly shook up the industry when it pivoted to on-demand video, expanding on its DVD rental roots, and its cultural significance is hard to underestimate. It also has some great functionality, like offline downloads, which makes it a joy to use across various devices. They have also made a big push into games, which has given subscribers even more ways to squeeze value out of their subscriptions.

Tom Power, Senior Entertainment Reporter for TechRadar, says “It’s hard to argue against subscribing to Netflix. It’s cheap, has thousands of shows and movies in its back catalog and offers various perks, such as the ability to download content.”

Pricing: $6.99 (ads), $15.49, $22.99 per month | HDR: HDR10, Dolby Vision | Audio: Dolby Atmos, Netflix Spatial Audio | Offline downloads: Android, iOS, Windows 11, Amazon Fire tablet, Google Chromebook 


What we like about Disney+: Star Wars, Marvel, Pixar and Disney under one roof

Disney+ has so many big-name franchises at its disposal that it’s almost impossible to fathom. Between hosting the entirety of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Star Wars movies and shows, and Disney-Pixar animated films, this streaming service truly is the place for kids, families and superhero fans alike.

When it first launched, there wasn’t much else alongside these tentpole IP, but Disney’s reach is extensive. You can now enjoy more varied content from Disney-owned studios such as FX and 20th Century Studios — including shows like “The Simpsons” and “The Bear”. It’s no surprise that Disney+ has even managed to outpace Netflix’s subscriber count at times.

If you bundle it with Hulu and ESPN+ as well, you’re often getting quite a good deal overall, though as of 2024 all three services are cracking down on password sharing in a similar manner to Netflix. 

Pricing: $7.99 (ads), $13.99 per month | HDR: HDR10, Dolby Vision | Audio: Dolby Atmos | Offline downloads: Android, iOS 

Apple TV+

What we like about Apple TV+: A sleek Apple interface with an increasingly respectable content library

Apple TV+ isn’t usually the first option you think of when counting the best TV streaming services — but since its launch back in 2019, the platform has added hits like “Ted Lasso” and the Oscar-winning film “CODA”. It’s also become a brilliant place for modern sci-fi, in my opinion, with excellent shows like “Severance,” “Silo,” “Foundation” and more. As Power tells us, “If you want prestige TV at a reduced cost compared to Max, Apple TV Plus is absolutely worth investing in.”

As you’d expect from Apple, the interface is a brilliantly sleek affair and offers a streamlined experience for navigating your favorite shows. Similar to Amazon Prime, the Apple TV app offers plenty of licensed programming for purchase, even if it’s not covered by your subscription.

One big perk is Apple TV+’s integration with the broader Apple ecosystem. New Apple device purchases generally throw in a three-month subscription for you to test the streaming service out. If you’re a big Apple fan, you can opt for a $19.95 per month Apple One subscription that includes Apple Music, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade and 50GB of iCloud storage — truly a fantastic deal, in my opinion.

Pricing: $9.99 per month | HDR: HDR10, Dolby Vision, HDR10+ | Audio: Dolby Atmos | Offline downloads: iPhone, iPad, Macbook

Prime Video

What we like about Prime Video: Offline downloads, original programming and the Prime ecosystem

Amazon Prime Video is one of the largest streaming services out there, whether you’re counting its massive library — with three times the number of movies as Netflix, at the time of writing — or its 200 million subscribers. 

Prime Video’s biggest benefit is the Prime ecosystem: when you subscribe, you don’t just get access to TV streaming, but also free delivery and exclusive discounts on the Amazon retail site, over 100 million songs through Amazon Music Prime, grocery delivery through Amazon Fresh, a Twitch Prime subscription and unlimited photo storage. 

But Prime Video alone seems worth the subscription cost, thanks to a huge content library with 15,000 films and almost 2,000 TV shows as of 2024. By comparison, Netflix has half the number of movies, even if it does better on TV series. it’s an excellent choice for many genres especially if you’re partial to an evening film, in my opinion.

Pricing: Video only subscription is $8.99 per month (Amazon Prime membership is $14.99 per month) | HDR: HDR10, Dolby Vision, HDR10+ | Audio: Dolby Atmos | Offline downloads: Android, iOS, MacOS, Windows, Fire tablet | 


What we like about Paramount+: The home of Star Trek, Halo and more

Paramount+ has carved out a niche for itself with some notable flagship shows — “Halo,” “Yellowjackets,” etc — and it’s the home of the past 60 years of Star Trek shows.

Originally CBS All Access, the platform was rebranded in 2021 as Paramount+, amid a broader push into original programming that has managed to increase the platform’s profile. Paramount’s massive content library certainly helps, across CBS, MTV, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon. It’s also a great place for live sports, with coverage of the NFL, PGA golf, The Masters, basketball and more. 

Pricing: $5.99 (ads), $11.99 (No ads, with Showtime) per month | HDR: HDR10, Dolby Vision | Audio: Dolby Atmos | Offline downloads: Android, iOS 


What we like about Hulu: A great mix of on demand streaming and live TV

Hulu may not be long for this world, given chatter around folding the service into the Disney+ platform, but for now it offers a distinct lineup of great TV shows — with the possibility of almost 100 live TV channels for its most expensive subscription tier.

There’s also a huge range of comedy, whether you’re interested in “Malcolm in the Middle,” “Futurama” or “Abbot Elementary.” There’s also plenty of drama like “The Handmaid’s Tale” and “X-Files” to tide you over too. 

The basic ad-supported plan is $8.99 per month. An ad-free experience will cost $17.99/m, while a Live TV subscription ramps up the price to $76.99 per month. If you want a good streaming experience alongside plenty of live TV channels, all in the same interface, then Hulu can be a great choice.

Pricing: $8.99 (ads), $17.99 (no ads), $76.99 (Live TV) per month | HDR: HDR10, Dolby Vision | Audio: N/A | Offline downloads: Android, iOS 


What we like about Max: HBO original program series are hard to beat

Max brings together a huge amount of original programming, thanks to the merger that mashed together HBO Max (famed for its excellent scripted TV series) and Discovery+ (reality TV and docuseries).

HBO is still a byword for high-quality TV, with hits that include “Succession,” “The Last Of Us,” “The Sopranos” and “Game of Thrones” — a legacy that few other streaming services are able to emulate, in my opinion. Max is also home to DC TV shows and films with a huge range of comic book-based animated series and live action flicks.

The addition of Discovery content certainly increases the offering. Max is still one of the best TV streaming services available today — particularly for fans of prestige TV, in my opinion.

Pricing: $9.99 (ads), $15.99 (no ads), $20 per month (ad free, 4K streaming) | HDR: HDR10, Dolby Vision | Audio: Dolby Atmos | Offline downloads: Android, iOS, Fire tablet 


What we like about Peacock: Good price, good shows and live sports

NBC’s TV streaming service launched in 2020, and now has over 30 million subscribers in the US.Thanks to NBC’s many studios and networks, you’ll get a wide variety of programming including live sports like football, soccer and Wrestlemania, as well as some landmark sitcoms like “The Office,” “Modern Family,” “Community” and “Parks & Recreation”. But Peacock also offers ambitious original programming, like the sci-fi series “Brave New World” to the Natasha Lyonne-starring “Poker Face” and the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air reboot “Bel-Air.”

The basic tier (Premium) only costs $5.99 per month, but you’ll need to pay $11.99 for an ad-free experience with Premium Plus and to be able to download titles for offline viewing. 

Pricing: $5.99 (ads), $11.99 (no ads) per month | HDR: HDR10, Dolby Vision | Audio: N/A | Offline downloads: (Premium Plus plan only) Android, iOS, Fire tablet 

How to choose the best TV streaming services

There are many TV streaming services available these days. We’re a long way from the days when Netflix was the only major player. Services by Disney, Apple and Amazon have become serious challengers to the once-dominant platform. 

We spoke to a number of leading experts in the world of home entertainment, from market analysts to entertainment reporters, to tell you the answers to the most common questions you might have — and to help you decide which TV streaming services are right for you.

Meet our experts

At NBC Select, we work with experts who have specialized knowledge and authority based on relevant training and/or experience. We also take steps to ensure all expert advice and recommendations are made independently and without undisclosed financial conflicts of interest.

  • Tom Power, Senior Entertainment Reporter at consumer publication TechRadar.
  • Max Signorelli, Consumer Research Lead (Media & Entertainment) for consultancy firm Omdia.

Why trust NBC Select?

Henry St Leger is a freelance entertainment and technology reporter with extensive experience covering streaming services, reviewing TVs and testing user interfaces for a host of consumer gadgets. They previously worked as the Home Cinema Editor at TechRadar and now freelance for NBC Select, Insider and The Independent.

Disclosure: Peacock is the streaming service of NBC News parent company NBCUniversal; NBCU is owned by Comcast, which is a co-owner of Hulu.

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