Netflix is the biggest streaming service in the world and has been for a long time, especially since 2013 when Netflix first began producing its original content. As the years go on, however, more and more streaming services have cropped up, stealing away key portions of Netflix's catalog while the streaming giant continually raises prices. In this article, we'll tell you everything you need to know about Netflix and if it's still worth it in 2021 and on.
First and foremost, before we talk about Netflix's catalog of movies and shows, we have to acknowledge how region-dependent Netflix's library actually is. Sometimes, the show you want to watch won't be available on your region's Netflix, even if what you're trying to watch was available before, but another region will have that particular movie or show, no problem.
Nonetheless, regardless of regions, Netflix's catalog continues to grow in numbers while key shows and movies are continuously removed as other streaming services offer more money to tie popular IP exclusively to their platforms. Friends, The Office, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Harry Potter, The West Wing, and much, much more were once available on Netflix but aren't any longer.
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Ultimately, though, losing a couple of shows here and there isn't the end of the world, unless it's your favorite show you watch all the time and suddenly can't, and traditionally, to compensate for this, Netflix pushes their users towards their own original content.
As far as original content goes, Netflix is still unrivaled. There are no competitors out there that have even a tenth of the acclaimed shows Netflix has produced when it comes to streaming services. From House of Cards, Orange Is The New Black, and Lilyhammer to where we are now with Sex Education, Stranger Things, and Queen's Gambit and everything in-between, Netflix's exclusive library is stacked with some of the best television shows ever made.
Other streaming services like Apple TV+ are investing heavily in their own original content, even bringing big names and lots of production value to projects, but haven't really hit the mainstream yet with a majorly successful new show or movie.
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Even services like Amazon Prime, which have slowly but steadily built up a roster of well-liked original content, don't really compare to Netflix. While Mrs. Maisel might be an amazing Prime original show that critics and fans alike totally adore, it's still a largely niche show that never really reached Stranger Things heights in terms of its popularity.
So, if you haven't made your way through the likes of Netflix hits like Russian Doll or Seeking a Friend for the End of the World or checked out Squid Game yet, or anything along those lines, then Netflix is definitely worth a subscription in 2021.
Unfortunately, though, after you watch the original content on Netflix you're interested in, and once you aren't waiting for a new season of a show you like to drop soon, then the cost of Netflix becomes a lot harder to swallow.
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Today, there isn't a great reason to stay subscribed to Netflix every month of every year, because shows that aren't originals come and go, most often going, and once you make it through the content you can only find on Netflix, other services like Hulu tend to have better coverage of currently-airing shows as well as libraries filled with older, popular shows.
All these developments come hand in hand with Netflix's routine price hikes, too. While Netflix never increases its prices too drastically in one single go, the streaming giant has been steadily increasing prices since 2014. This shouldn't come as a surprise as the news continues to come out surrounding just how much money Netflix spends on producing original content each year.
What this means for the consumer is that they're going to be paying more for less but that what they do get won't be available anywhere else. If what's exclusively on Netflix is truly that amazing, which it often can be, this can justify a subscription. But there are only so many Netflix hits, even if there are more Netflix hits than original hits on other streaming services.
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Plus, streaming services aren't necessarily tied to an individual. While each streaming service has limits on simultaneous screens to make sure 100s of people won't use the same account, one Netflix subscription with a single screen can easily support a family or a friend group, especially if these people also use other streaming services, too.
So, maybe your buddy has a Netflix subscription he lets you use whenever a new season of your favorite Netflix show drops, and maybe you have a Hulu subscription you let your buddy use a couple of times a week to catch the latest episode of their favorite primetime show. The more you use a streaming service, the less worth it it will get in time.
There are definitely ways to make Netflix worth it in 2021, and depending on who you are and how you like to consume content, whether or not it's worth it for you will definitely vary. But as streaming services spread more and more of their libraries across services, seasonal subscriptions and shared subscriptions are only going to become more and more lucrative