Netflix gave us all a nice summer surprise with the announcement of their price hike. I’m personally going from paying $11.99 (*Blue-Ray) to $17.98 a month (a 50% increase). Well as a consumer I say no and here’s my alternative:

Netflix is not in the industry of movies, it’s in the industry of video entertainment. This is an important concept because our disposable time for consuming video is limited. So the question becomes, “Is there an alternative source of media to fulfill the void of Netflix?” The simple answer is definitely yes.

The Streaming Alternative: Say Hello to Hulu

Pros versus Netflix

  • Ability to watch current episodes with little to no delay from network broadcast
  • Free for all
  • Ability to watch past episodes and exclusive content with Hulu Plus (same price as Netflix Streaming)

I’m a current Hulu Plus subscriber and have been enjoying watching shows such as Reaper, Misfits, Dirty Sexy Money, Whites, The Booth at the End, and many others. The only con of Hulu is the ads but at only 15 seconds, I can live with the ads if it means access to fresh and exclusive content. Besides, Hulu hasn’t recently increased my rate by 50%.

The Blue-Ray/DVD Alternative: Redbox

Once you go Blue-Ray, it’s hard going back. This is why I paid extra for Blue-Ray access at Netflix. It’s hard to beat 1080p resolution with 7.1 sound. I can only hope that someday soon, either Hulu or Netflix will offer this resolution for their streaming. So yes, Netflix can get me back if they start pushing 1080 resolution with 7.1 sound.

In the mean time, I say hello to Redbox. At Redbox, a Blue-Ray rental is $1.50. Compared to my new Netflix Blue-Ray rate of $9.99, I would break-even at about 6 Blue-Rays per month with Redbox; plenty of viewing for me when combined with Hulu. Sure, Redbox only carries a limited selection of 30-40 Blue-Rays, but I can usually find something to watch in that mix. Plus, it’s a pay-as-you-go instead of the flat-fee ooops-i’ve-kept-the-disc-for-2-months Netflix option.

Cost Comparison

Hulu/Redbox HuluPlus/Redbox Netflix
Streaming Free $7.99 $7.99
6 Blue-Ray $9.50 $9.50 $9.99
Total $9.50 $17.49 $17.98

However you slice this tomato, Netflix is the more expensive alternative. So in light of this analysis, Netflix’s lacking streaming content, and their lack of 1080 w/ 7.1 streaming, I’ll be closing my five year old account at Netflix. (Been a member since Oct, 2006).

Still Not Convinced?

Give this alternative a try for at least a month during September. You can suspend your Netflix account temporarily while you decide if this alternative will work for you.


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