Netflix goes from strength to strength – so much so that it has toppled last year’s winner, Amazon Prime Video, and even muscled its way to the front of the whole streaming sector to wrestle the Product of the Year Award out of Tidal’s hands.
There are several reasons for its success. First off, it continues to offer an expanding range of top-quality new and original content that’s more than good enough to keep the water-cooler chit-chat flowing at workplaces across the land, much of it available in 4K, from Better Call Saul to Stranger Things. In terms of content – bespoke shows in particular – Netflix strides away from any nominal competition.
And, if you have a TV that can process it, there’s some HDR content available too. It’s not obvious from the search menus but if you type ‘HDR’ into the search field you’ll find a list of HDR content (Bloodline, Marco Polo, Daredevil etc). It’s all displayed with prodigious detail, vibrancy and stability, too, as colours pop and contrasts punch.
Other feathers in Netflix’s cap include shows in Dolby Vision, Dolby Atmos and finely rendered 5.1 audio. Yes, it’s more expensive than Amazon Prime Video year’s winner) if you go for HD (£7.99) or 4K with HDR (£9.99) streaming, but we think it’s more than worth it, even if Prime often nabs new releases first.
There’s good news for mobile users too. For a long while it wasn’t possible to download anything from Netflix to watch offline. Since November 2016, though, content can be downloaded to your phone and tablet to watch, glitch free, at your leisure. You can’t download literally everything, but there’s plenty of choice and lots of the most popular content is there to stick on your device.
Netflix is easy to use and it’s compatible with the vast majority of formats. PCS, Macs, Google Chromecast, any smart TV worth its salt, Blu-ray players from all the big brands, tablets and phones are all on the menu. Aside from the TV app’s rather retrograde A-Z keyboard (rather than QWERTY) search function, it’s straightforward to browse and enjoy its more-hit-than-miss recommendations based on your viewing.
Easy to use, great-looking and great-sounding, Netflix is everything you want from a video-streaming service.
Great content, beautifully displayed – which you can download to your phone