Sizing up streaming services for students

J’Mari HughesReporter

Netflix is home to over 4,000 movies, 1,000 TV shows, and 110 million users. Over 90 percent of college students use the streaming service, according to a survey from LendEDU.

Every month, Netflix releases big time movies and TV shows whose popularity circulates throughout tweets, YouTube videos, and, as said by sophomore Esther Clebert, memes.

Titles such as “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before,” “Stranger Things,” and most recently, “Birdbox,” are only a few of Netflix’s content made widely popular by its viewers throughout social media sites.

“I saw [“Birdbox”] on Facebook and people were hyping it up so I said, let me watch this,” said Tiana Brown.

Students expressed an interest in a wide variety of genres from anime, documentaries, dramas and sitcoms. Sarah Foristel, a sophomore, said she watches medical shows and that she is on the Grey’s Anatomy kick for the fourth time.

Foristel also said that when it comes to paying for Netflix, she shares an account with two people. Like her, Clebert and Brown share an account with other friends. They said there is no need to pay for an account if someone is offering his or hers for free.

Because of Netflix’s desire to produce more original content, USA Today said that the price will increase by one to two dollars per streaming plan.

“Being a full time student, I wouldn’t have the extra money,” Foristel said. “But we all agree to keep doing it evenly no matter what the prices are.”

Freshman Soleil Colone said that she and her sister split paying for Netflix and Hulu. With the way Hulu’s prices are set up, Colone said she and her sister would be paying an even amount if Netflix’s prices rise, rather than one of them paying more than the other.

“I’ve kinda stopped watching Netflix and started using Hulu more just because I pay for the kind without commercialsso it’s kinda like the same thing,” she said.

One difference between the two streaming services is that Netflix does not come with commercials, like Hulu, YouTube, and cable do. Clebert said she prefers Netflix over Hulu or cable because she cannot stand the constant interrupution from commercials. Colone said she still uses cable to watch certain TV shows because they are not available on Netflix.

“I like the Firestick,” Brown said, “because sometimes you can get more new recent movies or even older ones that wouldn’t be on Netflix.” According to Wikipedia, a Firestick, or an Amazon Fire TV, is a digital media player and its microconsole remote developed by Amazon. The device is a small network appliance that can deliver digital audio and video content streamed via the internet, to a highdefinition television. It also allows users to play video games with the included remote, via a mobile app, or with an optional game controller.”

Jonny Middleton, a sophomore, said he prefers Netflix because it is the most readily available, while Foristel said she does not even understand Hulu.

“I’ll only watch Monday through Thursday because of the way my schedule is,” Foristel said, “and then I only watch maybe an episode if I get that far into it.”

Defying the popular belief that millennials binge-watch Netflix all day, Clebert said she only uses the platform sporadically. Brown that she will now take a break due to school, and Middleton said he will watch it only two to four times a week when he has nothing else to do.

“I wish it had more shows,” was the one piece of criticism Clebert had about Netflix, “like SpongeBob.”

Photo Credit: J’Mari Hughes

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