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The one where we tried to pick all the best streaming services

The one where we tried to pick all the best streaming services


Big day for TikTok and HBO in the first-ever Vergecast Streaming Services Draft. Tough one for Netflix, though.

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A list of favorite streaming services with TikTok, HBO Max, and two mystery picks.
Image: The Verge

What’s the best streaming service? It feels like a big and important question to answer. It’s also a completely impossible, completely subjective question that depends on everything from your budget to your favorite Mission: Impossible movie. The streaming market is a teeming mass of stuff, with various platforms rising and falling, and nothing ever stays the same for very long.

But here at The Verge, we like answers. So, for this episode of The Vergecast, we decided to answer that big question the only way we know how: chaotically and at great length. So we held the first annual Vergecast Streaming Services Draft, in which our three co-hosts each drafted their top five streaming services. There were surprises from the very beginning, lots of arguments throughout, and definitely no condoning of piracy. We would never.

Before you see the results below, take a listen to the show.

Or watch it on YouTube! Have we mentioned The Vergecast’s YouTube channel is up and running? Smash that subscribe button, friends.

To recap, here’s how the draft shook out:

  • Nilay’s picks: TikTok, the Disney bundle, YouTube TV with Sunday Ticket, Apple Music... and his friend Vipin’s magical Plex server.
  • Alex’s picks: HBO Max, Paramount Plus / Showtime, Channels, Criterion, and Apple One. For her bonus pick, she chose Xbox Cloud Gaming.
  • David’s picks: YouTube Premium, Peacock, Netflix, Discovery Plus, and Hulu with Live TV.

Even since we recorded, the landscape has begun to shift: today, Warner Bros. Discovery revealed the combination HBO Max / Discovery Plus service that’s just called “Max.” (David and Alex, under the rules of our game, both get to have that one. But only for this year.) We got a new The Marvels trailer — score one for Disney Plus. Google got a whole slew of free channels, making it a FAST powerhouse. It looks like Sony might be pushing harder into cloud gaming, which means PlayStation Now probably won’t go undrafted next time.

As always, the only constant in the streaming wars is chaos.

The Vergecast /

A podcast about technology and emotions


Update 3:45PM ET: Noted the now-confirmed details from Warner Bros. Discovery’s Max event.