OPINION — Nowadays there are so many streaming services available, with even more on the way. With so many out there, it’s hard to pick which to sign up for, especially if you’re on a college budget. Luckily, my cousin and I have an arrangement where we each pay for half of each streaming service we share. This way we save money and get to enjoy a variety of programs that each service offers. 

Let’s start off with Disney Plus. It is one of the newer streaming services and I already got a message that they would be doing a $1 price increase for my next billing cycle. Regardless, if you’re a fan of Disney movies and old Disney shows, this is the place for you. It’s also home to Star Wars and Marvel, which is even more enticing to me. Disney Plus, like many streaming services, has its own original shows and movies as well. At $8 a month, it’s also one of the cheaper options. But when I signed up for Disney Plus, I got the bundle, which sits at $14 a month. The bundle includes Hulu and ESPN Plus, which for me is worth it even more. My cousin pays $7 and I pay $7. It’s perfect.

Since I mentioned Hulu, let’s go here next. Hulu is the best streaming service for next-day viewing. If you miss one of your favorite shows on Monday, it’ll most likely be up on Hulu by Tuesday.  Unlike Netflix, you don’t have to wait until the current season is over for the episodes to be up. The ads are annoying, but you can also get an ad-free version as well as watch live TV if you choose to. If I didn’t have Hulu, I wouldn’t be able to catch up on “Manifest” or “Black-ish”when I miss them during the week. 

HBO Max, like Disney Plus, is on the newer side. I get it for free because it’s included in my parent’s Direct TV plan. During COVID-19 it has been my favorite streaming service because I could watch a lot of good movies at home rather than going to the theater. “Wonder Woman 1984,” “Mortal Kombat” and “The Suicide Squad” are a few that I am thankful to be able to watch on HBO Max. There are also some really good shows on HBO Max such as “Euphoria” and “Titans.” I would categorize it as the most mature streaming service because it has a lot of teen and young adult content, so if you have kids, it may not be the best option. 

Peacock is also on the newer side. I originally got the free trial so I could watch the “Saved By the Bell” reboot. “Saved By the Bell” was my favorite 90’s show, and there was no way I wouldn’t be watching the reboot since the original cast would be in it for the most part. Once that free trial ended, I didn’t bother with it. That was until WWE announced a partnership with Peacock. Originally, I had to pay $10 a month for the WWE Network. It was a one-stop-shop for all things WWE from the company’s inception to today. This month the WWE Network became obsolete in the United States and was replaced with Peacock, which meant I had to get it again. And let me be honest, I hate it. It’s only $5 a month, but now there are ads that the WWE Network didn’t have. It’s also 1,000 times harder to find what I’m looking for. If I searched “Sasha Banks” on the WWE Network, everything from her pay-per-view matches to interviews to documentaries would pop up. Now if I search the same on Peacock, I get a total of 8 videos, which are just the most recent clips she has for the week. I am not a fan of Peacock in the slightest, but knowing it’s the only way I can watch extra WWE content, I’ll keep it. 

Lastly, the most popular streaming service: Netflix. I used to share Netflix with one of my friends for free, but once I started college, I got my own. Netflix is the most popular streaming service for a reason. It has the best original content as well as the best selection of TV shows and movies in my opinion. There is something for every age group. If I only had the ability to keep one service, it’d be Netflix, followed by Disney Plus or Hulu as a close second if budget allows.