Netflix vs. Amazon: Which Streaming Service Should You Get?

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Which service is the better choice? Consumer Reports says it's not so black and white.

When you subscribe to one of the leading video-streaming services -- Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video -- you get a wide offering of movies and television shows, along with a buffet of different options.
Consumer Reports says it can be hard to decide which video streaming service is a better call - Netflix or Amazon Prime Instant Video. Margot Gilman explains, "The comparisons are not always clear. Even when it comes to basic information, like how many movies there are to choose from."

Amazon Prime offers more than 17,000 movies and TV series, significantly more than the 9,000 plus that Netflix offers. But Netflix pulls ahead overall, because more than 7,000 of those videos are high-definition, versus less than 2,000 for Amazon Prime.

As for convenience, most TVs Consumer Reports tests and recommends come with both apps already installed. Some of the less expensive TV's tend to come only Netflix ready.

And Netflix has some popular original series ... like "Orange is the New Black " and "House of Cards." Amazon has some original programming, too, and also offers free music streaming of more than one million songs and free two-day shipping on Amazon purchases.

Gilman weighed in, "Overall, if you're most interested in high-definition movies and TV, Netflix is the way to go. On the other hand, if you are okay with standard definition, but like the idea of a greater selection, not to mention all the free shipping, Amazon Prime probably your best bet." But all things considered, the two are pretty equal and cost about the same: $96 a year for the Netflix starting plan and $99 dollars a year for Amazon Prime.

Since browsing for movies on both Amazon and Netflix can be awkward, Consumer Reports suggests checking out instantwatcher.com -- a site plugged into the databases of both providers. Instant Watcher can help you navigate the selection on both services.
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