By now most Netflix subscribers have heard that the movie rental service is raising its prices, forcing subscribers to pay 60 percent more each month to watch online movies and DVDs.
If that has you steaming mad, there are some cheaper alternatives. But are they any good?
Subscribers threaten to Cancel
Dave Villardo is among those unhappy. "We heard that they are no longer offering the unlimited streaming as well as the DVDs, they are splitting it into two parts, making you pay separately," he said.
Jeff Hammond said the low price was the biggest draw, "it was very convenient. I've used it for months. It was always easy to use, and I liked the price it was."
But that price is no more.
What it will cost
As of September 1, 2011, Netflix drops its $9.99 monthly plan that lets you watch unlimited movies online and rent DVDs through the mail.
Instead, it'll be:
Don't like it? There are some alternatives:
Occasional renters will do best at Redbox, with popular movies for just $1 a night. Of course you must return them the next day or get charged again. And selection is not Redbox's strongest suit.
Blockbuster by Mail is another option: For $11.99 you get unlimited mail movies, plus occasional free rentals at your nearest Blockbuster store.
And if streaming is your thing, consider Hulu Plus for $7.99 a month for movies and TV. Its movie selection, however, is limited at this point.
Amazon's Instant Video is a new service, that's sort of like an online Redbox. You pay by the movie. Great for light watchers who don't rent many movies a month.
Apple TV offers many movie rentals through iTunes, but it is not the cheapest service. Unfortunately, for longtime Netflix users, and serious movie watchers, none of them comes close.
Or stay with Netflix and choose a cheaper plan
If you don't like the higher price, consider whether you really need both services.
If you drop either the mail portion or online portion of your package, it will actually be 2 bucks cheaper. Many people who have discovered online streaming will no longer need the mail program.
And that way you don't waste your money.
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