Hotstar, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, SonyLIV, Voot, Zee5: Prices, download options, streaming quality compared
Hotstar, Amazon Prime Video, SonyLIV, Netflix, Voot, Zee5 Subscription Price, Plans, Offers: Hotstar, Amazon Prime Video, Netflix and other OTT platforms are popular in India, thanks to an increased video consumption due to low mobile data costs. According to data by Counterpoint research, Hotstar is among the leading OTT player followed by Amazon Prime Video, SonyLIV, Netflix, Voot, and Zee5.
We compare OTT platforms like Hotstar, Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, SonyLIV, and others, based on subscription prices, downloads, streaming options, and other key parameters to help you pick the ones services that are best for you. For instance, Hotstar can be a good option for those who like watching more sports, while Netflix is well-known for its original series and movies.
Hotstar Premium subscription will cost Rs 299 per month or Rs 999 for one year and it includes a host of content from across Star Bharat, Star Plus, HBO Originals, Star World, HOOQ, National Geographic, and more. But the highlight is its dedicated sports section with categories like Tennis, Swimming, Formula 1, Kabaddi, etc. The service also has rights to stream live the ICC World Cup matches.
Users can also view multiple screens at once with Premium subscription and also download content to watch offline, which seems like a good deal at Rs 999 a year. A big negative: Hotstar does not allow multiple downloads for the same content. For fans of HBO original shows like ‘Chernobyl’, ‘Silicon Valley’, ‘Westworld’, etc and those who consume more sports content, Hotstar is a no brainer.
Amazon Prime Video
Amazon Prime Video is also Rs 999 per year, but it also bundles free and faster delivery with Amazon, early access to exclusive deals on the site, as well as Prime Video and Prime Music content. The monthly subscription will cost Rs 129. Prime Video offers up to 4K content, but it makes more sense for people who have a 4K TV at home. It allows streaming on up to three screens at once.
Amazon Prime also has its share of original shows such as ‘Hanna’, ‘Homecoming’, ‘The Widow’. For those interested, many latest Bollywood movies such as ‘Kalank’, ‘Kesari’, etc. One can download choose from ‘data saver’, ‘good’, ‘better’, and ‘best’ streaming quality to download content to watch offline.
SonyLIV’s premium subscription will cost Rs 499 for a year in India. Additionally, it can be subscribed to for seven days at Rs 29, 30 days for Rs 99, and six months at a price of Rs 299 respectively. However, SonyLIV does not have a download option so watching content offline might be a problem.
The service automatically adjusts the streaming quality of the content based on the network connection and there does not seem to be an option to select manually. On SonyLIV, one will find more local content and less of Hollywood movies, etc. There is a dedicated section for live Sony TV channels as well as Live sports events such as cricket. One can also access original content such as ‘The Good Vibes’, ‘Lost & Found, ‘#LoveBytes 2’, etc and host of regional content in Tamil, Gujarati, Punjabi. Then there is the LIVFIT section for fitness related shows.
Netflix is among the most expensive streaming services in India with plans starting at Rs 500 per month. Only one screen at a time can be viewed and HD or Ultra HD content will not be available. The Standard monthly plan of Rs 650 will let a user stream two screens simultaneously and content in HD quality can be viewed as well. The Premium plan of Rs 800 per month offers access to Ultra HD as well as HD content and four screens at a time.
The content can be downloaded for offline viewing as well with all three plans. One can also manually select the download video quality from ‘Standard’ that uses less storage and ‘High’ that users more storage. The download location can be chosen as well. The streaming quality of Netflix is generally pretty good even on mobile data.
Viacom18’s Voot needs registering with Facebook or Gmail account to be able to download content and get access to parental control for kids. However, one can skip the process as well and move on to content directly. Voot’s content ranges from TV channels like Colors, MTV, Nickelodeon across various regional languages including Telugu, Tamil, Bengali, and more.
Voot offers most content in Standard Definition (SD), but the quality can be changed manually as well. However, free subscription also means users will have to deal with advertisements in between videos, which can be an issue in uninterrupted viewing. Voot also has a separate tab for Kids content as well as a good catalog of Bollywood movies and Voot original shows like ‘Shortcut’.
Zee5 has an all access pack at Rs 999 per year of Rs 99 per month where users can stream the service on five devices simultaneously. The all access pack with Gaana+ subscription will cost Rs 198 a month. Then there are monthly regional packs like Tamil, Telugu, Kannada at different monthly and yearly price points.
The download option for popular movies and shows is available as well and users can also stream content on low bandwidth. The content includes shows and movies in 17 languages and over 60 Live TV channels.