Canadian alternatives to Netflix

The best sites similar to Netflix Canada for streaming TV shows and movies.

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Netflix is a pretty big deal these days. It’s the dominant provider of on-demand entertainment for millions of people around the world, and unsurprisingly, Canada has taken quite a shine to Netflix’s vast library of movies and TV shows, hitting an estimated 6.7 million subscribers as of April 2018.

This success hasn’t gone uncontested, however. Eager to capitalize on the streaming boom, rival services like CraveTV, Amazon Prime Video and hayu have emerged to provide Canadians with plenty of choice for getting their streaming fix. Each of these services offers something a little different, distinguishing themselves from Netflix with unique content, extra features or cheaper pricing.

To help you decide whether any of these Netflix alternatives is right for you, we’ve broken down their core features below. We’ve also put together comprehensive guides for many of the services, which you can read by using the links in the relevant section below.

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1. Crave

Crave doesn’t offer much in terms of original content, however, they have a selection of shows and movies that are not offered by other streaming services.

Available on Chromecast, Samsung Smart TVs, Xbox One, Amazon Fire, Apple TV, Windows Phones and tablets, Android Phones and Tablets, iPhone and iPad and web browser. Not available on PlayStation.

  • Costs $7.99 a month, however it’s free if you’re a Bell customer
  • Enjoy TV shows, movies and over 400 documentaries
  • Has exclusive rights to HBO and Showtime

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2. iTunes

Organize your music, movies and TV shows and shop for the ones that you want. Streaming radio is also available with iTunes Radio.

iTunes provides a central location to download, not just music, but movies and TV shows too. There are thousands of movies and TV shows to choose from, so you can catch up on your favourite episodes at any time.

  • Works on Mac, PC, iPad, iPod touch and Apple TV
  • iTunes Radio is free
  • Gift cards are available to send to friends and family

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3. Acorn TV

Specializing in British television series, Acorn TV opens you up to a world of mysteries, drama series, documentaries and comedies.

For US$4.99 a month, you can watch the best of British TV from the comfort of your own home. Compatible on a range of devices including Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, iPhone and iPad, Android mobile and tablets, Chromecast, laptops desktops and tablets via browser.

  • Costs US$4.99 a month
  • Watch shows like Loch Ness and Midsomer Murders

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4. TMN & HBO

If you’re looking for access to HBO and a selection of movies, shows and documentaries, The Movie Network may be an option to consider.

Subscribe to TMN through your cable provider and you automatically have access to TMN Go, which allows you to stream content from the Internet. HBO, which streams Game of Thrones and other phenomenal original series, comes in a package with TMN.

  • Watch on your TV, computer, tablet or smartphone
  • Access to HBO in a package bundle

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5. hayu

If you love your reality TV, no streaming service gets you more juicy drama than hayu.

For just $5.99 a month, hayu cuts right to the chase by offering nothing more or less than thousands of hours of reality TV fast-tracked from the US.

  • Supports a wide range of devices including computers, tablets and smartphones
  • Lets you download episodes and watch them offline
  • Offers a 30-day free trial

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6. Amazon Prime Video

With an emphasis on original content that you won’t find anywhere else, Amazon Prime Video is one of the best-value alternatives to Netflix.

While the library of blockbuster movies and big-name TV shows available through Amazon Prime Video in Canada could be better, the selection of original content more than makes up for it. With critical darlings like The Grand Tour, The Man in the High Castle and American Gods available exclusively through Amazon Prime Video, the affordable yearly buy-in is definitely worth it.

  • Free as long as you’re an Amazon Prime member, which is $79 annually
  • Plenty of exclusive content like The Grand Tour and Mozart in the Jungle
  • Offers a 30-day free trial

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7. Sundance Now

Offering a big selection of indie movies, binge-worthy TV shows and hand-picked documentaries, Sundance Now has a collection of sophisticated and eclectic content.

If you’re looking for access to unique content, Sundance Now may be the right streaming service for you. For $4.99 to $6.99 a month, access hundreds of indie films, documentaries and TV shows via web, Android, iOS, Apple TV, Roku and Chromecast.

  • Pay for an annual membership, which works out to $4.99 a month
  • $6.99 a month with a monthly membership
  • Offers a 7-day free trial

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Updated March 31st, 2020
Name Product Price p/month or equivalent Free trial? Service Simultaneous streams 4K/UHD?
Disney+
Disney+ [CA]
CA$8.99
7 Days
On-demand streaming
4
Yes
hayu
hayu [CA]
CA$5.99
30 days
On-demand streaming
1
No
CBS All Access
CBS All Access [CA]
US$5.99
1-month
On-demand streaming
2
No
Fubo TV Canadian Basic
Fubo TV [CA]
CA$15.99
7 days
On-demand streaming
2
Yes
fuboTV offers sports streaming for Canadians as well as Cloud DVR recording for live events and options for additional packages.
Prime Video
Prime Video [CA]
CA$5.99
1 month
On-demand streaming
3
Yes
Residents of Quebec aren't eligible for a free trial of Amazon Prime
Curiositystream
CuriosityStream [CA]
US$2.99
No
On-demand streaming
Yes
Yes
Acorn TV
Acorn TV [CA]
US$4.99
7 days
On-demand streaming
1
No
Acorn TV offers British TV shows on-demand.
YouTube Premium
YouTube Premium [CA]
CA$11.99
1 month
On-demand streaming
1
Select titles
SundanceNow
Sundance Now [CA]
US$6.99
7 days
On-demand streaming
1
No
Club Illico
Club Illico [CA]
CA$9.99
No
On-demand streaming
1
No
Club Illico offers French TV shows and movies for a French-Canadian audience.
Crave + Movies + HBO package
Crave + HBO [CA]
CA$19.98
1-month
On-demand streaming
2
No
Includes hit movies and current HBO seasons, as well as six live streaming channels (Crave 1, Crave 2, Crave 3, Crave 4, HBO Canada, HBO Canada 2)
Crave
Crave [CA]
CA$9.99
1-month
On-demand streaming
2
No
Gives you access to Crave originals, past seasons of HBO shows, Showtime series, and a limited number of Family and Kids titles.
Shudder
Shudder [CA]
US$4.99
7 days
On-demand streaming
1
No
Shudder is a screaming service dedicated totally to contemporary and classic horror flicks.
Netflix Premium
Netflix Premium [CA]
CA$16.99
No
On-demand streaming
4
Yes
Netflix Basic
Netflix Basic [CA]
CA$9.99
No
On-demand streaming
1
No
Netflix Standard
Netflix Standard [CA]
CA$13.99
No
On-demand streaming
2
No
YouTube Premium Family Plan
YouTube Premium Family Plan [CA]
CA$17.99
1 month
On-demand streaming
6
Select titles

Compare up to 4 providers


Which internet TV provider offers the highest streaming quality?

The highest streaming quality currently available is 4K Ultra HD. Netflix and Amazon Prime Video both support 4K streaming, though only for select titles – mostly original content rather than traditional Hollywood fare. To stream in 4K through Netflix, you’ll need to purchase their top-tier subscription options, while Amazon Prime Video offers 4K streaming by default with its standard subscription.

Just keep in mind that streaming in 4K can chew through quite a large chunk of data: On Netflix, an hour of 4K streaming uses up roughly 7GB.

How much do these alternatives cost compared to Netflix?

A basic Netflix subscription will set you back $8.99 a month, but this only gets you the ability to stream to one device at a time and limits you to streaming in Standard Definition (SD). A premium package costs $13.99, which gives you access to Ultra HD and the use of up to four screens at one time. CraveTV isn’t far behind Netflix, with a pricier subscription than some other streaming services.

hayu, AcornTV and Sundance Now have the clear price advantage on Netflix, charging just $5.99, US$4.99 and $6.99 a month respectively. The catch here is that hayu only allows you to stream to one device at a time, and both have a much smaller content library than Netflix. Your choice of viewing is also limited, where hayu has a library filled with reality only TV content, while AcornTV has a library stocked with British content. Sundance Now has a focus on indie films and documentaries, which is suited toward the viewer with eclectic taste.

What shows and movies do Netflix’s competitors offer?

Content is king in the streaming video space, and Netflix has a sizeable lead on the competition in terms of the number of TV shows and movies it offers. That said, quality is always more important than quantity, and there are plenty of top-notch titles available exclusively on CraveTV, Amazon Prime Video and Sundance Now.

Here’s a comparison of some of the top shows available on each service:

ServiceKey content
NetflixStranger Things, Prison Break, Orange is the New Black, The Crown, Black Mirror, Master of None, 13 Reasons Why
CraveTVThe Wire, The Flash, Orphan Black, Jersey Shore, Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Handmaid’s Tale, Lucifer
TMN & HBOGame of Thrones, Nurse Jackie, Call Me Fitz, Skins, The Wire, The Sopranos, Westworld, Silicon Valley, Veep
hayuThe Real Housewives of Orange County, Keeping Up With the Kardashians, The Hills, Vanderpump Rules
Amazon Prime VideoTransparent, The Grand Tour, The Man in the High Castle, Mozart in the Jungle, American Gods, This is Us
iTunesThe Walking Dead, Better Call Saul, Pretty Little Liars, Downton Abbey, Revenge, State of Affairs, The Real Housewives
Sundance NowGaza Surf Club, The Bureau, Travel Man, Boyhood, Laurence Anyways, Capote, Shoah, On The Road

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