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Netflix for Mac: the best way to binge your favorite shows

Juliet Childers

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Netflix towers as one of the most prevalent video streaming services across the world and Netflix for Mac is an option for Apple users. The app features an entire catalog of original content along with a rotating library of other media. From true crime documentaries to kid’s TV shows, the app lets you easily enjoy a diverse range of media. 

Let’s explore the features of the Netflix for Mac app and see if any competitors stack up against it.

Netflix for Mac: the best way to binge your favorite shows

An easy-to-use interface, personalized recommendations, and more

Netflix has become the leading media and entertainment service provider in the world. It has every genre you can think of from reality TV to Bollywood classics.

Though the programs for different operating systems vary in ways like UI, the Mac app and the Windows app still offer the same kind of quality streaming and content catalog. As with many online services, the Netflix app syncs all the data and viewing choices on multiple operating systems and platforms including Android, Windows, and iOS.

As such, you can use Netflix on multiple devices.

Why personalized recommendations matter

In comparison to the native Mac program  Apple TV+, the Netflix for Mac app has a few key benefits. It offers personalization based on watch history and it features a better organization of content with a UI to match.

Each user profile gets personalized recommendations based on which shows and movies are watched. If you consume more content, you will get more precise and relevant content suggestions. Compared to Kodi, Stremio, and other similar services, Netflix’s personalization stands out as a value add.

Furthermore, Netflix lets viewers resume the content from where they left off instead of starting it over along with skipping intros of shows.

Limitations of the Netflix for Mac app

The Netflix for Mac app uses streaming technology, so the content quality depends on having a stable internet connection

Netflix constantly buffers the background video stream to avoid disruptions. If not using Wi-Fi, high-quality video streaming can quickly exhaust your data plan.

Subscription cost

Netflix requires a subscription for its service. Different plans offer various perks at commensurate price points. Each one lets you create a different number of user profiles, watch specific numbers of screens concurrently, and more.

Over the last few years, Netflix has consistently begun to increase the monthly subscription cost with the base plan now starting at $9.99 USD.

  • Basic Plan $9.99 – 1 screen, 1 download, and no HD options
  • Standard Plan $15.49 – 2 screens, 2 downloads, and HD available
  • Premium $19.99 – 4 screens, 4 downloads, and Ultra HD available

The most expensive plan lets you watch content in Ultra HD, but not everyone can make room in the budget for these plans.

Other concerns

Netflix does use an intuitive algorithm for video streaming. While this is a good way to offer personalized recommendations, it can also feel quite disruptive if you are expressly concerned about privacy and data.

In addition, you may want to search for a title alphabetically, but Netflix for Mac doesn’t have that capability. Adding content to “My List” allows for easier access while browsing by genre can introduce more options.

Netflix for Mac vs. alternatives

It seems like there is a new streaming service popping up every week. Many network companies have pulled their shows from other platforms in favor of their own services. They’re even going so far as to create exclusive content for those platforms.

This seems like a play out of Netflix’s book, but it’s one of the only ways for streaming services to remain competitive. Let’s see how streaming services compare to Netflix.

Apple TV+ vs. Netflix

Apple burst onto the streaming content scene with lots of lackluster films and series. But the platform finally had a huge hit in the form of Jason Sudeikis-led Ted Lasso.

Outside of shows like Severance or Foundation, however, the platform does not have as much to offer as Netflix does in the way of exclusive content. The average price is $4.99 per month for the service.

Hulu vs. Netflix

For a long time, Hulu was network TV’s best friend and online hub for streaming. Fans could watch recent shows one week after their air date with commercials for free. Over the years, that model changed, and now that many networks have their own freemium or paid-for options, Hulu is beginning to lean on its own content like The Handmaid’s Tale and The Great to retain customers.

But Hulu has an additional benefit of integration with other services across its many plans. Here are the options:

  • Hulu – ad-supported for $6.99 per month
  • Hulu (No Ads) – ad-free for $12.99 per month
  • Hulu + Live TV with Disney+ and ESPN+ – all of the ad-supported Hulu content now with Disney+ and ESPN+ for $69.99 per month
  • Hulu (No Ads) + Live TV with Disney+ and ESPN+ – the same plan as above without ads for $75.99 per month
  • Users can add a la carte services such as ESPN, HBO Max, unlimited screens, and more for varying rates per month added to their current plan rate

Disney+ vs. Netflix

Like Hulu, Disney+ offers many different kinds of bundle plans that include content from their wide array of acquired properties. This includes the Star Wars franchise, National Geographic, Marvel, and more.

The base and the ad-free plan are just $8 per month, but the company says a cheaper, ad-supported plan is coming in late 2022.

Paramount+ vs. Netflix

Paramount+, formerly CBS All Access, mostly touts its monopoly on Star Trek as its main attraction. However, older Star Trek series like The Next Generation and Voyager can be found on Netflix.

Subscribing to this service on top of Netflix would only be worth it if you care about Paramount+ productions such as Evil and Why Women Kill or new episodes of Star Trek: Discovery and Picard.

Paramount+ has several plan options to choose from including:

  • Essential – streaming with limited commercials for $4.99 per month
  • Premium – ad-free for streaming, but with commercials for live TV streams and channels for $9.99 per month
  • Either plan also comes available with the addition of SHOWTIME for $11.99 and $14.99 per month respectively

Peacock vs. Netflix

Peacock is NBC’s answer to the streaming bandwagon. It does have exclusive content such as the Amber Ruffin show, a new MacGruber series, and a new Psych movie. Many users also value the option to add live TV channels and sports.

The plans start at Premium for $4.99 per month with ads and Premium Plus for $9.99 per month to go ad-free.

Amazon Prime Video vs. Netflix

Amazon doesn’t need its original content to be super successful to justify making it. The company already makes billions of dollars in revenue every year, so its original content has a bit more freedom in that sense. For instance, they picked up sci-fi sleeper hit The Expanse when Syfy canceled it.

Recently, the Amazon Prime Video Wheel of Time series caught headlines for its grandeur and book adaptation. In comparison to Netflix, Amazon’s streaming content is a small slice while the library of films and television shows Amazon offers is shrinking steadily. If you have a Prime account, however, you get the streaming service for free, so it’s a win-win.

HBO Max vs. Netflix

Though Game of Thrones is no more, HBO still has a ton of original content available on its HBO Max platform for everyone. John Oliver fans can delight in his wry humor and hard-hitting journalism pieces.

Try out new series like the recent hit Euphoria with Zendaya or watch an old favorite series like The Sopranos. The best part about HBO Max vs. Netflix is the back catalog of HBO content including documentaries and classic films.

It costs $9.99 per month with ads and $14.99 per month without ads.

Verdict: the best Netflix experience for Mac

If you’re looking for the best way to experience streaming video from Netflix for Apple computers, the Nextflix for Mac app is your best bet. You can more seamlessly enjoy all that the platform has to offer using a native app on your computer.

The enormous selection of content spans across many genres to keep even the most avid consumer sated. The intuitive interface helps users parse the well-organized catalog. However, the lack of an alphabetical option is a bit irksome, but it is by no means a deal-breaker.

Additionally, the latest update introduced new features and Netflix has plenty of proprietary content all its own now. You simply can’t get many of their shows elsewhere in terms of streaming platforms. That’s just one more reason to download the Netflix for Mac app.

PROS

  • Large catalog of titles that is always changing
  • Straightforward interface
  • Builds personalized recommendations based on your watch history
  • Platform exclusive content

CONS

  • Requires a consistent internet connection for service
  • Region-specific restrictions
  • Increasing monthly fee cost with higher fees for UltraHD quality and more screens

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