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Netflix is one of the top picks when it comes to streaming, in a landscape that includes the platform's main rivals: Amazon and Hulu. Might that be about to change? Well, it might be if Walmart has anything to do with it. That's right, the retail empire is currently considering adding a new item to its arsenal -- a streaming service. Here is what you need to know.
Walmart's streaming service has strong aims, planning to join the streaming game with their own SVOD service, along with a free, ad-supported service, per The Information. So, how does Walmart plan to take on industry juggernauts such as Netflix and Amazon Prime? Well, Walmart's strategy for dealing with its potential rivals is pretty simple, as well as being largely positive for consumers, who are feeling the crunch of Netflix's rising prices. Walmart plans to price their service at a lower rate.
The price of Netflix currently ranges from $8 to $14 per month, with the streamer charging one cent shy of $11 a month for its standard HD streaming plan. Walmart is considering a rate that will have consumers paying less than $8 a month, which is less than Netflix's lowest price. Hopefully, that does not mean Walmart is planning to charge $7.99 monthly. What, exactly, Walmart's cheaper package will get you regarding HD or SD streaming remains unclear.
Obviously, what seems like a little money to pay eventually adds up. Let's put this to the test. If you were to subscribe to Walmart's streaming service, which, let's imagine, at its most is $7.99, you would pay $95.88 total per year. But, a yearly subscription to Netflix's standard HD streaming package would currently cost you a total of $131.88 per year. Now the difference seems quite a bit more impressive.
While Walmart's paid-for streaming service has potential, the free, ad-supported video service sounds less compelling, personally speaking. People are going to streaming services to avoid watching commercials. That has been a massive part of their appeal and success, just as it has been for premium cable networks. How successful an ad-supported service could be under the current market is arguably questionable. People value their free time and spending it watching ads is not as compelling as it used to be.
If Walmart succeeds in launching a streaming service that costs less than $8 per month, it could, theoretically, cause Netflix to compete. This means they could potentially bring down their prices, which would certainly not cause subscribers of the streaming giant to frown. That is all hypothetical, of course.
Stay tuned to CinemaBlend and we'll keep you up to date on info about Walmart's potential new streaming service as details become available. For content streaming on Netflix this year, check out our 2018 Netflix premiere rundown, and when you are done reading that, our guide to Amazon Prime's premiere schedule. For new television content on the horizon, check out CinemaBlend's guide to TV's summer premieres.