Apple TV vs. Netflix: The Race is On

If you’re paying close to $100 dollars a month or more, you’re probably looking for the alternative to cable.

Luckily, there are quite a few options. As the internet helps to bring more free content to more people, many are learning that they no longer have to be tethered to their cable company for television. In fact, you can get rid of your cable TV company with many of the current options.

Did you know that most internet television choices have news channels, movies and other entertainment alternatives? Most people might be reluctant to totally give up cable, because they are afraid that they will have to say goodbye to their favorite programming, but that just isn’t the case anymore.

Most media streaming devices, which are simply digital receivers that connect to your internet and television, can provide current cable channels from CNN to MSNBC to a host of other great entertainment shows.

For example devices like Netflix and Apple TV, will let you stream your favorite TV shows. Netflix has a subscription that will allow you all you can eat television and movies, but Apple TV only provides for a pay as you go model.

You also have another option, provided you obviously have an internet connection. You can actually connect your laptop up to your TV; you will need an HDMI connection on both your laptop and your television. Also, if you prefer to just watch all of your free movie content on your PC, which is also possible.

The Best Media Streaming Players

In my opinion there are only two top media streaming players. One is Apple TV and the other is the Sony PlayStation.

Apple TV

Why do I love Apple TV so much, well it was one of the early media streaming players, besides the gaming device offerings. You can watch YouTube, listen to podcasts and of course stream the latest movies that come to DVD. If you love documentaries, I also happen to believe that Apple TV has some of the largest and most diverse documentaries in their library. For a while there was a race with Netflix to catalog every movie ever made. I’m not exactly sure where that project is at, and which company is winning now, especially with the last generation of Apple TV now offering Netflix as a media option.

The Disadvantage of Apple TV

Well cost is the biggest one. If you love to watch movies on the weekend and say you watch several back to back. You could easily spend close to $20 bucks in a weekend. Not bad if you consider going to the movies for two people cost that much today. But all in all you should realize that Apple TV doesn’t have free content. You pay as you go.

Sony PlayStation and Netflix

Another great media streaming player is the Sony PlayStation. In fact, I give a thumb’s up to any gaming device that allows you to stream content to your TV. My second favorite streaming alternative is Netflix. I love the fact that you can pay a monthly subscription and watch virtually all the content you want, from movies to popular TV shows. There is even a feature on Netflix that profiles your favorite programing and provides a host of other movies that you might like, by genre. Apple TV does this in a very limited way. For example, it will show you what other people watched based on your current selection. Netflix seems more narrowly focused on providing with more precision what you are apt to like. And their genres are more focused as well. Instead of comedy, they might title a genre “British Romantic Comedies”.  

The Disadvantage of Netflix

In my opinion the expansive catalog of Apple TV just isn’t there. If there is an ongoing to race to have indexed and available every movie ever made, Netflix in my estimation is losing, badly. But all in all, if you consider the price of watching Netflix, the value is there.

Remember that there is an alternative to cable and you do in fact have options.