Which streaming service is right for you? Comparison shop with our guide

Streaming shows
Clockwise, from top left: “Stranger Things,” “The Mandalorian,” “The Morning Show,” “The Handmaid’s Tale,” “Parks and Recreation” and “Fleabag.”
(Netflix / Disney + / Apple TV + / Hulu / Peacock (NBC) / Amazon Prime)

This story is part of a Times series on the great streaming wars of 2019. Click here to read the rest of our coverage of Disney +, Apple TV +, HBOMax and more.

The television landscape is set for a seismic shift in the coming months, with the arrival of new streaming platforms Apple TV+, Disney+, HBO Max and NBCUniversal’s Peacock. These new options enter an already booming landscape, with established streamers like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime and CBS All Access offering their own lineups of buzzy original series and libraries of binge-able favorites from years past.

Here’s our one-stop comparison shopping guide to how the major streaming services stack up.


Bottom line: The streaming service trying to be everything to everybody

The $12.99 per month standard plan allows for streaming on two different devices simultaneously and includes high-definition video when available. There is also a basic plan for $8.99 a month and a premium plan for $15.99 a month.


Launch date:
Streaming since 2007

Back catalog titles:
“Breaking Bad,” “Mad Men,” “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Schitt’s Creek,” “NCIS,” future home of “Seinfeld” (2021)

Original series:
“House of Cards,” “Orange Is the New Black,” “Stranger Things,” “Black Mirror,” “Big Mouth”

From left to right, Gaten Matarazzo, Joe Keery and Maya Hawke on a stroll in the Starcourt Mall in Netflix’s “Stranger Things.”
From left, Gaten Matarazzo, Joe Keery and Maya Hawke on a stroll in the Starcourt Mall in Netflix’s “Stranger Things.”

Amazon Prime Video

Bottom line: How about some TV to go with your free shipping?

$12.99 per month or $119 a year for a full Amazon Prime membership, which includes shipping, video, music and more. $8.99 per month for Prime Video only.


Launch date:
Evolved into Prime’s video-on-demand service in 2011

Back catalog titles:
“Downton Abbey,” “The Americans,” “Orphan Black,” “Mr. Robot,” “Magnum P.I.”

Original series:
“Transparent,” “Fleabag,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” “Catastrophe,” “Bosch”

Phoebe Waller-Bridge in “Fleabag.”
Phoebe Waller-Bridge in “Fleabag” on Amazon Prime Video.
(Amazon Prime Video)


Bottom line: The place to catch up on current network shows and recent cable favorites

$5.99 per month with ads, or ad-free for $11.99 per month. (Plans with live TV are also available, starting at $44.99 per month.)

Launch date:
Subscription component launched in 2010.

Back catalog titles:
“Adventure Time,” “Key & Peele,” “How I Met Your Mother,” “Atlanta,” “The Shield,” “Scrubs”

Original series:
“The Handmaid’s Tale,” “Marvel’s Runaways,” “The Act,” “Casual,” “Four Weddings and a Funeral”

Elisabeth Moss as June in “The Handmaid’s Tale”
Elisabeth Moss as June in “The Handmaid’s Tale” on Hulu.
(Elly Dassas / Hulu)


CBS All Access

Bottom line: For fans of “Star Trek,” “The Good Wife” and CBS classics of yore

$5.99 per month (or $59.99 per year) with ads; $9.99 per month (or $99.99 per year) ad free

Launch date:
The first of the Big Three TV networks to launch a stand-alone streaming service in 2014

Back catalog titles:
“Caroline in the City,” “Hawaii Five-O,” “JAG,” “Under the Dome,” one of the nonexclusive homes of all the “Star Trek” shows

Original series:
“Star Trek: Discovery,” “The Twilight Zone,” “The Good Fight,” “Why Women Kill,” “Star Trek: Picard”

Christine Baranski in ‘The Good Fight’
Christine Baranski in “The Good Fight” on CBS All Access.
(Patrick Harbron / CBS)

Apple TV+

Bottom line: The prestige TV you know, but with Silicon Valley polish

$4.99 per month

Launch date:
Nov. 1

Back catalog titles:

Original series:
“See,” “The Morning Show,” “Dickinson,” “Snoopy in Space,” “Oprah’s Book Club”

Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon in “The Morning Show” on Apple TV.
Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon in “The Morning Show,” coming to Apple TV+.
(Hilary B Gayle / Apple)


Bottom line: The new entrant for genre fans — and their kids

$6.99 a month or $69.99 a year

Launch date:
Nov. 12

Back catalog titles:
“Boy Meets World,” “Star Wars Rebels,” “DuckTales,” “Kim Possible,” “The Simpsons”

Original series:
“The Mandalorian,” “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series,” “The World According to Jeff Goldblum,” “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” “Lizzie McGuire”

Everything we know so far about Disney+, including the cost of a subscription and what films and TV shows will be available at launch on Nov. 12.

Carl Weathers stars in “The Mandalorian”
Carl Weathers in “The Mandalorian,” coming to Disney+.
(Melinda Sue Gordon / Lucasfilm)


Bottom line: “Must-see TV,” revisited

Reports range from free (with ads) for those who receive NBC through a pay-TV provider to $10 or $12 per month.

Launch date:
April 2020

Back catalog titles:
“The Office” (from 2021), “Parks and Recreation,” “Everybody Loves Raymond,” “Cheers,” “Frasier”

Original series:
“Battlestar Galactica” reboot, “Saved By the Bell” reboot,” “Punky Brewster” reboot, “Dr. Death,” “Brave New World,” “Rutherford Falls”

Amy Poehler in “Parks and Recreation”
Amy Poehler in “Parks and Recreation,” which will be part of the catalog of NBCUniversal’s forthcoming streaming service, Peacock.
(Justin Lubin / NBC)


Bottom line: HBO pitches a bigger tent

$15-$18/month range predicted

Launch date:
Spring 2020

Back catalog titles:
“Friends,” “The Big Bang Theory,” “Sesame Street,” “Doctor Who,” “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air”

Original series:
“Dune: The Sisterhood,” “Gremlins: Secrets of the Mogwai,” “Love Life,” “The Boondocks” reboot, “The Flight Attendant”

‘The Big Bang Theory’
Jim Parsons and Mayim Bialik in “The Big Bang Theory,” which will be part of the catalog of forthcoming streaming service HBO Max.
(Michael Yarish / Warner Bros. TV )

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Tracy Brown is a digital editor and writer working in entertainment for the Los Angeles Times. She helps provide digital content for the Arts and Entertainment sections and has also written for the Travel, Books and Image sections. A Long Beach native, she graduated from UCLA.