Many people travel in trains, buses or cars to go to school, colleges or work and during the time of commute feel bored with nothing to do. Unless you are good at sudoku and don’t mind carrying it around wherever you go to keep yourself entertained, you will probably prefer watching a movie on your phone or watch an episode from your favorite TV show. Now due to limited storage on your device and the government’s recent ban on Torrent sites, your options to download movies have become limited. A year ago, no one would have considered streaming a whole movie online due to limited data plans and slow internet speeds, but after Reliance Jio has started offering a gigabyte of data per day, people have been spending more data than ever.
1. Cost Factor
Price is a major factor a user considers before buying a subscription.
Amazon Prime Video costs $8.99 per month (Rs578) or $99 per year whereas Netflix costs Rs 500, Rs650 and Rs800 for Basic, Standard, and Premium plans respectively. The basic plan comes with some restrictions on video quality so you might want to stay away from that one.
Hotstar is free to stream and is supported by ads. You can buy premium for Rs199 to browse premium content and movies ad-free and as of now, Voot is completely free and does not require the user purchase a subscription or any premium account. All the content is free to stream without any restrictions.
WINNER REGARDING COST FACTOR: Voot
2. User Interface
The amount of time you will spend on the app also depends on the user interface of the app you are using. No matter how good the content is but if the user interface is not up to the mark, you will feel like switching to another service.
Netflix wins this one with the smoothest user interface and an impressive recommendation engine. It also tells you which episode you left half watched the last time you used the service.
Amazon Prime Video differs with Netflix in the way that instead of ‘Continue Watching’ it has ‘Watch Next.’
Hotstar and Voot both have data heavy content on their home screens and require a decent internet connection for them to work smoothly.
WINNER REGARDING USER INTERFACE: Netflix
3. Option to download content offline
With bandwidth being limited to one gigabyte per day, you might want to download content over a wifi connection and then watch it later.
Downloading content from Netflix and Amazon Prime is easy. Just navigate to the video and then press the download button on the right-hand side of the screen.
Hotstar does not allow users to download premium content, but users can download other content offline. It lets users choose the quality and also shows how much space it will consume on the phone. The quality ranges from 140p to 720p.
Voot has not yet implemented the feature to download any content offline.
WINNER REGARDING DOWNLOAD SUPPORT: Netflix
ALSO READ: How to Download YouTube Videos on Android Mobile.
4. Video catalog and availability of Indian content
Not everyone watches only Hollywood movies in India. People love to watch Bollywood and Tollywood movies, cartoons and daily soaps. It is useless to buy a subscription from a service that does not stream your favorite show.
The content on Netflix is mostly in English language and contains a tiny amount of Hindi movies. It does not include any Hindi TV shows.
Amazon Prime has quite a few Hindi movies and is soon going to release original content in regional languages for the Indian users.
Voot only contains TV shows from channels which are owned by the Viacom 18 network. These channels include Colors in various languages and some channels for kids.
Hotstar has the biggest catalog of Hindi movies and shows thanks to the Star Plus network. It also contains many original TV shows which are Hotstar exclusives. You can change your language in the settings, and it will recommend you shows in the regional language that you have selected.
The Winner: Hotstar
Given a choice, I would pick Hotstar because it is free to stream and the premium subscription costs only Rs 200. It offers the biggest catalog of regional movies and TV shows, and the option to download most of the content offline is a major factor for choosing Hotstar. Another reason is the addition of original content from Hotstar which is usually high quality and does not disappoint. The user interface while streaming is also good and works without stuttering provided that you have a decent internet connection.
This was our comparison of streaming platforms. If we have missed some point, do let us know in the comments below.