Having TV shows and films on demand is the future for home multi-media. But having many different subscriptions to on-demand cable companies and pay-per-view services can be very expensive. Online streaming services like Netflix and Lovefilm offer a cost-effective one-stop shop for all your video and media needs. So, which one is the best choice for UK users?
After subscribing to both Netflix and Lovefilm, here is my comparison of both services:
Netflix and Lovefilm are excellent platforms with simple and intuitive interfaces. Netflix does come with a handful of apps which can help the customer experience but on the whole they’re both a pleasure to use.
They can both be accessed using many different hardware types. Lovefilm works on the following devices: PCs, Macs, Xbox 360, PlayStation3, Nintendo Wii, Kindle Fire HD, iPad, Sony, Samsung and LG TV and Blu-ray players, Sony Home Cinema and Sony Network Media Player.
Netflix is compatible with PCs, Macs, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Nintendo Wii and Wii U, Android, iOS, Chrome OS and Windows operating systems, Roku, Apple TV, Sony, Samsung and LG TV.
As they both use Microsoft Silverlight, Linux users may struggle.
Lovefilm has the unique option to rent DVDs and Blu-rays, which are dispatched to your home by post and you return for free once you have watched it.
There is a wide range of content on both services, albeit slightly old. As with all streaming services, you will rarely get brand new content (streaming sites generally get the licenses to videos after they have been released on DVD). If you are desperate to see a new film, a pay-per-view service is a better option.
As a stream-only service, if your Netflix search doesn’t find the thing you want to watch then you’re out of luck. Although, if a TV show or film is missing from Lovefilm’s streaming service, there is often the ability to rent it as a DVD or Blu-ray.
Whether or not Lovefilm or Netflix’s streaming content libraries is right for you is down to your individual preferences. If one service offers more shows you want to watch than the other, go for that one. Explore their databases a bit, typing in your favourite films or TV shows to see who has what.
Netflix offers a flat-rate fee of £5.99 per month. This price enables you unlimited access to Netflix’s streaming library.
There are various package options for Lovefilm, depending if you want to use their postage service or not. Here are the options:
- Lovefilm Instant: £5.99 per month for unlimited access to Lovefilm Instant’s streaming library
- Lovefilm by Post: £5.99 per month, 3 discs per month (1 disc out at a time)
- Lovefilm Instant + Post (unlimited streaming and rental):
- £7.99 per month (1 disc out at a time)
- £9.99 per month (2 discs out at a time) or
- £13.27 per month (3 discs out at a time)
As film buffs, we have found that Lovefilm has a better selection of older and newer films. Plus, the postal service allows us to have DVD nights at our friends’ houses without worrying whether or not they have Netflix-compatible internet televisions.
To make up your own mind, why not take a no-strings free trial and try both out?