More than 33+ million people are considered to be “cord cutters” and that number is increasing as you read this. It’s for good reason, however.
One of those popular cord-cutting options, being Netflix, isn’t the only game in town as there are a ton of fantastic alternatives.
Sure, while Netflix is extremely cheap and well worth the cost, there are so many other companies that you may want to consider adding to your collection. Most of these Netflix alternatives are just as much, sometimes cheaper or even free, so don’t think you have to drop a ton of cash to enjoy even more shows.
As I always love to save money, I wanted to touch upon the many fantastic Netflix alternatives you may want to consider if you love Netflix and want to find even more great entertainment, both paid and free.
NOTE: To use these options on your TV, I highly recommend you buy an inexpensive Amazon Roku device.
100% Free Alternatives to Netflix
If you have a library card, then it’s time to take advantage of the many wonderful third-party perks you may have access to such as Hoopla. Even if you don’t have a card, it takes only a few minutes to get one at a local branch and is 100% free.
While almost all libraries have partnered with Hoopla, some haven’t, so don’t be too shocked if you find out they don’t carry this awesome movie-watching platform. There’s a good chance your library does, however.
In short, Hoopla works just like Netflix, offering a variety of movies/TV shows that you can watch on demand. They also offer free audiobook downloads as well. Even if you’re not a member, you can take a look at the many titles they offer before joining. You might be surprised.
Hoopla works on Android/iOS, Apple TV, Android TV and Amazon devices.
- Website: Hoopla
IMDb TV (FREE)
Quite possibly the most popular movie-related website, IMDb TV recently launched its own platform where you can watch movies and TV shows at no cost.
With a similar setup to that of Netflix, you can browse by genre, the most recently added releases or even by the most popular streams at this moment. I encourage you at least check it out as I saw a ton of hit films from the past.
While the platform is 100% free, the movies and TV shows will have commercial breaks. This can be said for all of the free platforms, however.
IMDb TV works on internet browsers and all Amazon Fire TV devices.
- Website: IMDb TV
Much like Hoopla, you will also need a library card to access Kanopy’s content, but again, even if you don’t have one, it only takes minutes to do so at your local branch. Some colleges and universities participate with the free platform as well.
Kanopy offers more than 30,000 documentaries, classic and even independent films, with many of them including award-winning and critically-acclaimed movies. I can promise you that you can find a ton of interest.
Kanopy works on your TV, mobile phone, tablet and even online.
- Website: Kanopy
PBS (FREE or donation for premium)
Sure, you can get PBS via your over-the-air antenna, but you can’t watch on-demand nor can you take it on the go with your mobile device.
And, while all of the offerings here come straight from PBS, there are quite a few shows you may be interested in, including NOVA, PBS NewsHour, Frontline and Masterpiece, to name a few. The company does offer quite a few options via its app at no cost, but you can extend the library to more than 1,500+ titles when you make a monthly donation via the PBS Passport program. Seeing it’s a free option, it doesn’t hurt to add it to your viewing catalog.
The PBS app works on iOS/Android, Roku, Apple TV, Android TV, and Amazon Fire TV.
- Website: PBS
PopcornFlix offers a variety of hit movies, TV shows and even viral videos, all at no cost. Most of the movies are older than five to 10~ years old, but you may be surprised at the offerings.
With a setup similar to that of Netflix, it works in the same way, wherein you can browse by title, new arrivals, most popular and much more.
The PBS app works on iOS/Android, select Amazon devices and your internet browsers.
- Website: PopcornFlix
Pluto TV (FREE)
I mentioned Pluto TV in my free cable TV alternatives, and I will mention it here again as I see it as a fantastic free Netflix alternative.
As probably the best free option online, Pluto TV works more like your cable TV, wherein you can browse through more than 100+ channels, featuring sports, movies, TV shows, cartoons and so much more. And, the cool thing is that there are well-known channels available such as CNN, Bloomberg, Weather Nation and more. Just tune in to the channel and start watching.
Not only does Pluto TV offer a 100+ live channel lineup, but you can browse through an expansive on-demand library as well.
Pluto TV is available via a computer browser, Apple TV, Chromecast, select smart TVs, iOS/Android devices and Amazon devices.
- Website: Pluto TV
Snagfilms has more than 2,000 movies, TV episodes, documentaries and even exclusive original comedy shorts, according to the company’s description.
All of its content is free and works much like Netflix, wherein you can browse via category, etc.
You can Snagfilms via your browser or on your iPhone, iPad or Android device.
- Website: Snagfilms
Sony Crackle (FREE)
Probably one of my favorite options on this list, Sony Crackle offers a 100% free, no strings attached on-demand movie/TV series library. While the selection isn’t as grand as Netflix, they do offer quite a bit to choose from.
Featuring a ton of hits, such as Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, All in the Family, and even original programming, you can start streaming immediately as no account is necessary to view the free content.
Sony Crackle works on Apple TV, Chromecast, select smart TVs, iOS/Android devices, gaming consoles and Amazon devices.
- Website: Sony Crackle
Tubi TV (FREE)
Tubi TV works just like Sony Crackle, offering more than 10,000 movies and television shows. Sure, while the platform is 100% free, you do have to watch ads throughout your viewing, which can be a bummer to most. But, hey, they have to make money somehow, right?
Out of all the freebie options I list here, Tubi TV probably has the most well-known options, with movies from pretty popular companies like Paramount, Lionsgate and MGM. Even the TV lineup offers shows from NBC and Warner Bros. You don’t need an account to start viewing, so at least check out the selection to see how many titles you recognize.
Tubi TV works on Apple TV, Chromecast, select smart TVs, iOS/Android devices, gaming consoles and Amazon devices.
- Website: Tubi TV
This may be an obvious one, but YouTube does have quite a few TV shows and even movies/documentaries you can access right now. You just have to search to find what you’re looking for.
While YouTube is filled with a lot of garbage, there are hidden gems. You just need to know where to look.
For example, if you wanted to watch a documentary, searching Google for “great documentaries to watch on Youtube” offered more than 50+ ideas. It should only take you a few minutes to find what you’re looking for, but I promise there’s something of interest.
YouTube works on just about every platform, including gaming consoles, select smart TVs, Roku, Chromecast, Apple TV and many more.
- Website: YouTube.com
Paid Alternatives to Netflix
Amazon Prime Video ($12.99/mo)
If you’re already an Amazon Prime subscriber, then you already have access to the thousands of hit TV shows, movies and Amazon exclusives.
While the catalog, at least to me, isn’t as grand as Netflix, it’s well worth checking out if you’re already apart of Amazon’s Prime program. Even if you’re not, you get much more than just on-demand content. Amazon Prime members also get access to fast free shipping, Prime Music, exclusive deals and much more.
Amazon Prime works on most devices, including all Amazon devices, iOS/Android, Xbox One and PlayStation 4.
- Website: Amazon Prime Video
Hulu (starts at $5.99)
Hulu offers a variety of plan options, from its $5.99 value plan to the newer Live TV plan that starts at $44.99 a month. If you just want the on-demand content, then I would recommend you stick to the very basic $5.99 plan to at least see what kind of content is available. Even though you are paying, keep in mind that ads are still present unless you upgrade to the $11.99 a month plan.
Another favorite of mine, Hulu offers a load of movies and TV shows from very prominent networks like PBS, AMC, 21st Century Fox and much more. They also include hit originals, including Difficult People, The Path and a few more.
Hulu works on Apple TV, Android/iOS, Chromecast, Amazon devices, select smart TVs, internet browsers as well as gaming consoles.
- Website: Hulu
CBS All Access ($9.99/mo)
If you’re a fan of CBS programming, then this could be a Netflix alternative to consider.
CBS All Access offers more than 10,000 episodes on demand, all commercial-free. Subscribers can also access original series that CBS doesn’t broadcast freely, such as Twilight Zone, The Good Fight and so many more.
CBS All Access works on Apple TV, Android/iOS, Chromecast, Amazon devices, select smart TVs, internet browsers as well as gaming consoles.
- Website: CBS All Access
Great Courses Plus ($19.99/mo)
This is quite the price tag and name, I get it, but hear me out as to why I included it on the list.
While it sounds like a learning platform name, it is in a sense as you can learn via thousands of video lectures from distinguished professors, but you can also access thousands of videos from the Smithsonian, National Geographic and the Mayo Clinic, to name a few. Picture it more of a place to learn from world-class teachers, making for a great choice if you’re into educational documentaries, movies, etc. You can browse by category of interest and take a glance at what may be of interest to you.
Like many of these platforms, they do offer a 14-day free trial if you want to test it out for the time being. You can also view the titles before you even consider signing up.
Great Courses Plus is available on all Amazon devices, iOS/Android, Apple TV and Chromecast.
- Website: Great Courses Plus
Acorn.tv is designed more so for a British audience, but it doesn’t mean you can’t find a hidden gem.
Some of the most popular options include Murdoch Mysteries, Rumpole of the Bailey and Birds of a Feather. Like Netflix, Acorn.tv adds exclusive programs throughout the year.
Acorn.tv is available on all Amazon devices, Apple TV, electronic devices and select Samsung smart TVs.
- Website: Acorn.tv
Much like Acorn.tv, this is another option if you don’t mind watching British TV shows. It’s a joint venture between the BBC and ITV.
Noted to have the largest streaming collection of British TV, genres include mysteries, documentaries, soaps, lifestyle and more. Some of the most popular being “Antiques Roadshow” and “East Enders.”
You can watch BritBox via all iOS/Android devices, browsers, Chromecast, Apple TV and Amazon Roku players.
- Website: BritBox
Criterion Channel ($99/yr)
Said to be a movie lover’s dream, the Criterion Channel offers classics and many discoveries from around the world, thematically programmed with special features.
As I write this, the company notes that they constantly adding refreshed selections, from art-house to independents, adding something new every single day. There are more than 1,000+ options to choose from, so trust me, you will be kept busy for quite some time.
You can access the channel via a computer browser, Apple TV, iOS/Android devices and Amazon devices.
- Website: Criterion Channel
I only recommend Crunchyroll only if you’re a fan of anime and Asian drama series. If you’re a hardcore fan, then it’s one to consider as you will not be disappointed.
The platform simulcasts fresh from Japan, offering shows one hour after it has been broadcasted, all ad-free. Paid members can also enjoy the entire library.
You can access the channel via a computer browser, gaming console, Chromecast, Apple TV, iOS/Android devices and Amazon devices.
- Website: Crunchyroll
HBO NOW ($14.99/mo)
While it’s only HBO programming, much like PBS mentioned prior, you may find subscribing to HBO on its own well worth it.
From hit movies to a ton of original programming and documentaries, it can keep you as busy as Netflix can. You can always browse the titles before you even commit to signing up. HBO NOW offers a free trial for seven days and you can cancel at any time.
HBO NOW works via a computer browser, Chromecast, Apple TV, iOS/Android devices and Amazon devices.
- Website: HBO NOW
Mubi is a lot like Fandor mentioned earlier, kind of designed for the ultimate movie buff. Picture it almost like the independent movie Netflix.
According to the main website, Mubi offers cult, classic, independent and award-winning films from around the globe, with experts introducing something new every day. You will always have at least 30 titles to choose from.
You can access Mubi via a computer browser, Apple TV, PlayStation, Chromecast, select smart TVs, iOS/Android devices and Amazon devices.
- Website: Mubi
PureFlix focuses more on family-friendly content, including much more educational, faith, kids and TV shows to stream. Right on their website, it states “clean entertainment with faith and family values.” Like Netflix, they continue to add to their database daily, but again, it’s more so for families looking for something “safe.”
If you’re looking for more family-friend content, it’s one to consider, but it’s not for everyone. Like a lot of these paid Netflix alternative options, you can test drive it for free for 30 days.
Watch PureFlix anywhere online or on your mobile phone, tablet or TV.
- Website: PureFlix.com
Shudder is very niche as they only focus on horror, thrillers, and suspense films, so if you’re a fan of these genres, you may be a fan of this online streaming service.
Featuring some titles you are probably quite aware of, such as Gremlins and Hellraiser II, you can find just about any horror genre here. The company boasts the largest and fastest-growing selection of exclusive new releases and genre-define classics, all updated weekly.
Shudder works via Apple TV, Chromecast, select smart TVs, iOS/Android devices, Xbox and Amazon devices.
- Website: Shudder
As you can see, there are quite few Netflix alternatives, both free and paid.
And, which one you should choose really depends on your likes and dislikes as well as your personal budget. If you just want entertainment, then you should get by with the free options; however, if you want more of the hit movies, then you may want to explore the paid options. Again, there’s no right or wrong answer here. It’s up to you to dive deeper into these websites to see what they are all about.
In the end, all of the options I list are 100% legal, are extremely easy to use and most can be used with a majority of the devices you already own, such as a Roku or Apple TV. It’s just up to you to figure out which one will suit your viewing needs.
And, lastly, even though Netflix does cost money, there are ways to get it for free, at least for a limited amount of time.
As always, you’re more than welcome to comment, vent or even add additional LEGAL options in the comments below.
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