The market continues to grow with options to watch movies online. More and more streaming movie sites are coming to market which will fortunately create more competition.
New online movie sites that are just opening up this year include:
New Services to Watch Movies Online
- Disney+: Disney Plus is a streaming service that will focus on allowing you to watch Disney-owned content online. One of the big brands is Marvel which they recently purchased — movies like Avengers, Iron Man, Black Panther, Spider Man, Ant Man, etc — are all owned by Marvel and now Disney. Other movie brands they own includes Pixar (think Toy Story), Disney Movies (we know those!), Star Wars, and National Geographic (I had always thought this was owned by National Geographic!). Netflix has been playing many of the Marvel movies online but slowly they’re now pulling them as the rights go away — this will help prepare for a Disney Plus launch at the end of the year. Expected cost for this subscription service is around $7 / month. (a big change from Netflix’s $11+ / month). One additional twist is there’s a planned Disney / Fox merger and that would give Disney a majority stake in Hulu.
- Apple: Apple’s new online streaming service will be free to all apple users — this will provide a new incentive for non-apple users to switch to the service. Albeit, Apple phones tend to cost quite more than other devices. Maybe consider getting a used one?
Apple will plan to provide free access to selected HBO shows, and original content. Their self-made content plans include some unique twists with partnerships with some big players including Reese Witherspoon, Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg. One unique thing is that their main focus will be PG rated shows due to their large cross-age audience. Given the ratings limitation, I’m curious whether this will be a game changer for them.
- Facebook: Facebook Watch will be a way to watch movies online with your friends. There will be movie and TV show recommendations based on what you’ve already watched so their big data analytics are being used here also to great a unique experience. You’ll be able to organize a watch party to all watch the same show and comment at the same time. They’ll also develop original content as well as show real movies. The cost for this service is free and it will be monetized with advertising.
- DC: DC Universe from DC Comics. DC definitely has to get into the market to try to further monetize their brand. This way to watch online movies will be really focused on their comics. They’ll continue to focus on the brand and provide much more content to their fan base. Including allowing interactive comments.
- Amazon: Amazon Free Dive will be focused on older shows, and a different service from the free Amazon Prime Video that many people have today.
- Vudu: Owned by WalMart has been around for quite a while. They’re working on developing original content for this service as well.
The Existing Ways to Watch Movies Online
- Netflix: Netflix has both a DVD delivery service (yes its still around) along with a robust online movie streaming service. For the online piece, subscription rates continue to go up though they also continue to add more movies, series and are especially growing their own content substantially.
- Amazon Video: Amazon is currently head-to-head competing with Netflix in the online movie race. They have almost as many shows as well as are developing their own content. The differentiator is that their subscription service is included in the Amazon Prime rate which also includes free second day shipping and a variety of other valuable features.
- Hulu: Mainly focuses on existing Series and is also a subscription model. They do not create their own content.
Well now you have it. You can see there’s a wealth of options available for people to watch movies online. The key question is which one to choose — or will you choose many?