Why Netflix Deserves to be the Top Streaming Service

Nick Swafford, Staff Writer

With not much else to do in today’s current world, streaming videos, shows, and movies has become one of the best options to chase boredom away. Chances are, if you are itching to binge something, Netflix is your go-to. Statistically, it is most people’s go-to second only to Youtube. According to Amy Watson of Statista.com, as of September of last year in the United States, Netflix had 46.55 million users, about 20 million more than its closest competitor, Hulu. With the coronavirus, those numbers have changed a lot, but a survey done by Trevor Wheelwright of HighSpeedInternet.com at the end of March shows that Netflix still reigns supreme in terms of show services with 47 percent of the 500 participants choosing Netflix over other streaming services such as Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney Plus. At this point, it is clear who reigns dominant in the streaming world, but does Netflix really deserve that seat of power? I think it is a stiff competition, but Netflix is the most popular streaming service for a reason.

Ever since Blockbuster bit the dust in 2010, streaming services have increased in popularity exponentially and in recent years, more and more services have popped up out of the woodwork. Netflix’s main competitors are Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney Plus and while each one is uniquely enjoyable to watch, Netflix does have some qualities that cause it to outshine the others.

I have personally had the privilege to experience all four streaming services, and there are certain aspects of each service that I appreciate. The newest, but wildly popular streaming service, Disney Plus, has a lot to like for what it is. What it lacks in movie and show options, it makes up for with the high quality of all the Disney movies and shows we have come to love while growing up. It is extremely easy, however, to binge the material they have and then find yourself without a show to watch, and there are not a lot of genre options, which takes away from the greatness of the service. Amazon Prime Video also has a lot of features that I enjoy. Recently, I have been enjoying lots of Amazon’s originals, which is one of the service’s best qualities. I do have some grievances with the interface they have, however, as it pushes certain shows that I do not have an interest in and the pathway to genre selection can be somewhat confusing. Both of these services are great in collaboration with other services, but they do not quite match up with the two powerhouses in the streaming world, Netflix and Hulu. 

Now Hulu has a lot to like, and recently, it has only gotten even better. Hulu, like Amazon Prime Video, has a lot of originals that I can enjoy binging as well as an extensive selection of movies and shows that are all pretty high quality. It also has many bundle packs, which can help consumers save money while getting other services like Disney Plus or Spotify. With rewards like that, it is a fantastic option when deciding which streaming service to choose. On top of that, Hulu offers a cable-like system where you can watch television as well as have the ability to stream movies and shows at any time. Hulu does have some problems with its  systems, however, especially recently with Covid-19 making the demand for the service even greater. Sometimes, in my experience, Hulu randomly has bugs that either disrupts my streaming or causes audio or video to shut down, which hinders my ability to fully enjoy the stuff that I am watching. With those disadvantages, the spotlight is placed on Netflix. 

Netflix is the king of the streaming world because it blends all the good aspects of other streaming services into place and does not overstep its boundaries of what it is. Netflix, maybe because of its longevity, has ironed out a lot of the hiccups it has had over the years. Perhaps it is just my experience with the application, but I think Netflix has an incredibly clean user interface and does an incredible job at suggesting movies and shows that are appealing based on the user’s preferences. What sets Netflix apart from the rest, besides maybe Amazon Prime Video, is the service’s ability to make great original content and partner with several other companies to bring exclusive content that is actually worth watching. With the rise in popularity of the Chrome extension Netflix Party, people have been able to make the most of quarantine and stream videos simultaneously. Overall, while sometimes finding something new to binge can be difficult because of the numerous options, Netflix exceeds at nearly everything it sets out to do and that is why it has been and most likely will continue to be, the king of the streaming world.