by Carlo Miguel Castañeda, on category "Lifestyle"
May 10, 2017
Gone are the days when you had to stay up to watch your favorite shows, as is having to religiously track show schedules. Thanks to unprecedented deals and people’s need for entertainment on demand, a lot of video and music streaming services have popped up.
Though a lot of these services have been made available to circumvent the issue of piracy, it doesn’t always mean that you’ll have the same set of shows on a single platform. This asks the question: which streaming service is worth the money you pay for it?
There are two types: one for music, and one for movies and TV shows.
While music streaming has gotten more popular owing to artists providing their entire discographies to the various services out there, but that doesn’t mean that every artist’s discography exists across all services. For example, owing to disputes, some music streaming services do not carry any of Taylor Swift’s discography, among others.
Here are three services available in the country, across all devices.
Released in 2015, it is billed as the more accessible Apple product for users, owing to its compatibility with Android. On release, users received a three-month free trial. The app is free to download, but users need to subscribe to listen to music across all Apple devices, Android, and PC.
Subscription cost: Php 129/month for individual membership, Php 199/month for family sharing membership, up to six people.
Spinnr is a home-grown music streaming service for iOS, PC, and Android launched by Smart in partnership with TnT, Sun, and PLDT. Its main hook is that because of its tie-in with the mobile service provider, there are prepaid and postpaid subscriptions that include unlimited streaming for the app and downloads of your tracks.
Its other main hook is its extensive library of local artists and promos that allow you to win concert tickets or other freebies.
Subscription cost: Php 49/month, limited to Smart, Sun, and Talk n’ Text subscribers and Php 99/month to include access to promos.
Spotify’s digital music streaming service is arguably popular, owing to accessibility and its wide range of artists, and the ability to use one account to listen across multiple devices. Like Apple Music, you can sync your library to the app and download tracks when subscribed to premium.
One reason for its popularity is that it runs on a freemium model, similar to Spinnr. It also has a tie-up with Globe, allowing for unlimited streaming on certain postpaid subscriptions.
Video on demand means never having to wait another week for an episode, especially when you’re swamped at work. These video streaming services offer access to gigantic libraries of TV shows, movies, and documentaries. It also means that you’ll probably have a longer watching queue.
Originally a DVD rental by mail business, it expanded into the media streaming service market in 2007, before growing to also produce content in 2013. As of April 2017, Netflix has over 98 million subscribers worldwide, with the subscriber base also including the Philippines as of 2016. Apart from Netflix Originals, its library has an extensive collection of shows from the last few decades, along with documentaries and movies.
Subscription cost: Php 370/month for a basic subscription, 1 device only. Php 460/month for a standard subscription, 2 devices. Php 550/month for premium, which includes ultra HD and the ability to watch on up to 4 devices.
Billed as Netflix’s main competition in the Southeast Asian region, HOOQ (pronounced ‘hook’) is a joint venture of Sony Pictures Entertainment, Warner Bros., and Singtel. Apart from streaming the latest shows from the west, it also streams films on-demand, as well as local TV shows.
Subscription cost: Php 59 for one week, Php 149 for 30 days, Php 369 for 90 days, Php 729 for 180 days, and Php 1339 for 360 days, up to 5 devices
iFlix is a video-on-demand service based in Malaysia that has partnerships with over 150 studios and distributors globally. Like HOOQ, it also streams Asian dramas and is available in several Southeast Asian regions, including the Philippines. It also has an extensive collection of Japanese Anime and cartoons for its subscribers.
Subscription cost: Php 129/month
Streaming services are largely dependent on your internet connection, which means that lower Gb connections might have a hard time streaming, making it important to have faster internet in order to be able to stream music and other media to your heart’s content.
These services also provide an alternative to cable TV and allow you to curate what you want to watch accordingly. From here, it becomes a question of how much you’re willing to spend on the shows you want to watch.