When speaking of the best in streaming, it’s hard to top the likes of Netflix and Disney, companies whose global presence remains unmatched. Still, there are limits to their reach. Both streamers have titles available only in the U.S., for example, while film specialists like HBO Max and Hulu can only be used within the same area.
To fill in this gap, the UK has produced its own streaming services. Curzon Home Cinema offers users the chance to see the latest releases upon payment, while NOW has both live streaming and video-on-demand content (it also has licensed titles from American-based media studios like Fox).
Below, we list the very best streamers in the U.K.: a good mix of global and local services.
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Price: Apple TV+ is great value for money compared to just about every streaming service out there, in terms of both quality of the programming and service.
Offline downloads and 4K streaming: Although you have to pay for the service, Paramount+ offers premium subscribers offline downloads, as well as 4K streaming for select titles.
Price: $4.99 per month
Free Trial: 7 days
Device availability: Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, iOS, Roku TV, Samsung TV
Go to Apple TV+
Great for kids: There’s no shortage of content for younger audiences, with all the major Disney hits a click away.
New theatrical releases: Although sometimes you have to pay an extra fee (usually of up to $30), a great perk of Disney Plus is Premier Access, which makes theatrical releases immediately available to stream on the platform.
Exclusive releases: Since it’s Disney, the catalog of popular TV shows and movies that you can’t find anywhere else is huge.
The app: The Disney Plus app is so well-designed that in 2020, Apple named it the Apple TV App of the Year, and voted the best app of 2020 by Google Play users.
Price: $6.99 per month
Device availability: Amazon Fire TV, Android, Android TV, Apple TV, iOS, PlayStation, Roku, Xbox
Go to Disney+
High-quality original programming: With Netflix, you’ll have access to their critically acclaimed Original shows, such as House of Cards and Orange is the New Black, as well as their big-budget docu-series like Making a Murderer, all of which you can’t access on other streaming platforms.
User experience: The UI is pretty much perfect across the board. There are also perks like having different viewer profiles when sharing the account. Parental controls are also centralized.
Offline downloads on mobile: If you want to watch a movie or show on the go, Netflix gives you the option to download videos on your device for offline viewing.
The algorithm: Netflix has one of the smartest algorithms in the streaming landscape, so the personalized recommendations are usually on-point.
Price: $8.99 per month
Device availability: Amazon Fire TV, Android, Android TV, Apple TV, Changhong, Chromecast, Haier, Hisense, iOS, LG TV, Nvidia SHIELD, Panasonic, Philips, PlayStation, Roku, Roku TV, Samsung, Samsung TV, Sharp, Skyworth, Sony, TiVo, Vestel, Vizio, Wii, Xbox
Go to Netflix Dig deeper:
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The range of choice: Unlike other streaming sites, Prime gives you the option to watch shows that aren’t available on-demand, by “renting” them for a short time or “purchasing” the media to rewatch at will. You have to pay extra for it, of course, but the option is there.
Convenience: Prime Video is available worldwide (except for Mainland China, Iran, North Korea, and Syria). And let’s face it, Jeff Bezos is a trillionaire for a reason – for many, on-demand video is an added perk to the larger retail service, including free next-day delivery.
Offline content: Prime lets you download up to 25 titles to devices like your phone and tablet.
Price: $12.99 per month
Free Trial: 30 days
Device availability: Amazon Fire TV, Android, Apple TV, Changhong, Chromecast, Haier, Hisense, iOS, LG, Nvidia SHIELD, Panasonic, Philips, PlayStation, Roku, Samsung, Sharp, Skyworth, Sony, TiVo, Vestel, Vizio, Wii, Xbox
Go to Amazon Prime
At 6.99 per month or 69.99 per year (a 10% discount), it’s an affordable way to stream the infinite array of quality British TV.
Price: $6.99 per month
Free Trial: 7 days
Device availability: Amazon Fire TV, Android, Apple TV, iOS, LG TV, Roku, Samsung TV
Go to BritBox
The Roku Channel
The Roku Channel can’t replace Netflix or a cord-cutting service like Sling, but it’s a nice added bonus if you already have a Roku device. The selection of live channels is limited, but there’s something for everyone, including news, sports, and entertainment.
Price: free for 1 channels available
Device availability: Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Roku TV, Samsung TV, Website
Go to The Roku Channel
NowTV is an internet television service that is subscription-based and operated by the British television satellite provider, Sky. NowTV provides access to award-winning shows and films, as well as various sports channels. This service is for those who will love having high-profile movies, TV shows, and sports coverages all in one place. Launched in the UK in 2012, it’s currently only offered in England, Ireland, Germany, and Italy. NowTV has a variety of membership options, although it should be noted that their sports television subscription is separate from their TV and film subscription.
Price: $12 per month
Free Trial: 7 days
Device availability: Amazon Fire TV Stick, Android, Apple TV, Chromecast, iOS, LG Smart TV, PS4, PS5, Roku, Samsung Smart TV, Sony Bravia Android TVs, Website, Xbox One
Go to Now TV
Netgem TV is a UK-based all-in-one subscription service that provides hours’ worth of live and on-demand content and hundreds of channels, including BBC, ITV, Sky, and more. Depending on the package you pick, a subscription may also entitle you to their 4K TV box and other similar devices, since much like Roku or Vizio in the US, Netgem is powered by its own hardware platforms. Purchasing one of them can also give you access to a couple of free titles and channels, though most are still available as premium add-ons.
Price: $18 per month
Go to Netgem TV
Curzon Home Cinema
Curzon Home Media is an internet streamer that provides access to films through rentals. It releases many of its films on the same date they are available to watch in cinemas, so you can rest assured its selection is fresh.
Currently, the video-on-demand service is limited to the UK and Ireland, so if you’re in the area looking for a regularly updated library that also happens to contain quality art-house, foreign, and lesser-known films, then this is for you. Curzon Home Media, launched in 2010, is owned and operated by the London-based Curzon World Group.
Price: free for channels available
Device availability: Amazon Fire TV, Android, Android TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, iOS, Website
Go to Curzon Home Cinema
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The streaming services on this page were chosen by our editors. If you choose to subscribe to a streaming service we recommend as a result of our research, analysis, and curation, our work is sometimes (but not always) supported by an affiliate commission from the streaming service when you make a purchase.
That’s all from us for the 9 Best Streaming Services in the U.K.!