TV

How New Streaming Bundles Could Change The Way You Watch Movies

How New Streaming Bundles Could Change The Way You Watch Movies

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Verizon has reached an agreement with Netflix and Max to bundle both streamers at a very friendly $10 per month. Amazing, huh? If you enjoy commercials randomly interrupting your viewing of “Barbie” or “The Crown,” absolutely!

Individually, Netflix’s ad tier costs $6.99, while Max’s tier runs $9.99 (though they temporarily slashed that rate to $2.99 as part of a Black Friday deal last month). That’s a 40% discount, one that should boost subscription numbers given that Netflix’s ad tier has proven popular.

While this is an encouraging development for Netflix and Max, convincing subscribers to fork over even a combined $10 a month for an ad-supported service feels a bit like theft. It’s also worrisome for the future of sites like YouTube or TikTok, where you can hop on and watch hours of random videos, occasionally broken up by ads, for free. If people are willing to pay to watch a show like “The Sopranos,” which aired commercial-free for a price on HBO, with ad breaks that the series was never intended to accommodate, why should YouTube give away millions of videos for free? Why shouldn’t they hit you up for a seeming pittance of, say, 99 cents a month, especially when you know Zoomers and, presumably, subsequent generations digest media in multi-screen chunks? Can you imagine your life without access to YouTube? I can’t. We’re ripe for the mugging.

Meanwhile, if ad-free subscriptions to major streamers with industry-standard image quality keep rising (one year of Max’s 4k “Ultimate Ad-Free” package currently costs $199.99), will people settle for substandard presentations that wreck the intent of the works’ creators?

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