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Netflix Will Now Cancel Your Account Unless You Use It

If you pay for Netflix but don’t actually use the streaming service, you should probably cancel your subscription. After all, that’s several dollars leaving your account each month for nothing. Just like a gym membership for people who no longer work out.

However, even if you don’t cancel your own Netflix you may have it cancelled for you. This is because Netflix has announced it’s going to start cancelling inactive accounts automatically in order to stop people spending money on something they don’t use.

Netflix Cancels Inactive Accounts

In a post on the Netflix Media Center, Netflix announced that it’s going to automatically cancel the subscriptions of people not using their accounts. Inactive accounts represent “less than half of one percent” of its userbase, or “a few hundred thousand”.

Netflix considers an account inactive if it hasn’t been used for two years. Or, if you’re a newer subscriber, for one year since signing up. And anyone with an inactive account will be asked to confirm that they want to keep their membership.

“You know that sinking feeling when you realize you signed up for something but haven’t used it in ages? At Netflix, the last thing we want is people paying for something they’re not using…”

— Eddy Wu, Product Innovation at Netflix

This will be done by email and in-app notifications, which will begin appearing this week. If you see one you’ll need to confirm that you want to keep your Netflix subscription or Netflix will automatically cancel it. Saving you a few dollars each month.

Netflix insists that it’s easy for lapsed users who have their memberships cancelled to restart them again. And the company will be happy to have you back. If you rejoin within 10 months of cancelling, your profile and watchlist will still be as you left them.

How to Renew Your Love for Netflix

We’re big fans of Netflix here at MakeUseOf. So, the notion that you can’t find anything to watch on Netflix is beyond us. Still, maybe you’ve got better things to do than binge-watch endless TV. In which case, Netflix is doing you a massive favor here.

However, if the threat of Netflix cancelling your account makes you want to take a fresh look at the streaming service, check out our exhaustive guide to Netflix. It contains tips and tricks, tutorials and troubleshooting, and recommendations of what to watch.

Read the full article: Netflix Will Now Cancel Your Account Unless You Use It

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Netflix will cancel your subscription if you haven’t watched anything in the past year

Inactive accounts on Netflix represent less than a half of one percent of its overall member base so this move should not affect the company's bottom line by much.
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Microsoft 365 vs. Office 2019: What Are the Differences? Compared

While Microsoft still offers a standalone version of Office, the company definitely pushes you towards signing up for Microsoft 365 instead. While Microsoft 365 provides more than just Office, is it really a better value than buying Office 2019 on its own?

Let’s compare Microsoft 365 to Office 2019 to find out. We’ll help you decide which offering is more cost-effective for your needs.

The Differences Between Microsoft 365 and Office 2019

The two available varieties of Microsoft Office differ in what you’re buying, who can use the apps, and how long you get to keep access. Let’s look at what they offer before we move on to comparing prices.

What Does Microsoft 365 Offer?

Microsoft 365 (formerly known as Office 365) is a per-user subscription. It lets you install the full suite of Microsoft Office apps on as many devices as you want and sign in on up to five devices at a time.

When you install an Office app, you’ll need to sign in with your Microsoft account to tie it to your subscription. Microsoft 365 includes the following Office apps for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS:

  • Word
  • Excel
  • PowerPoint
  • OneNote
  • Outlook
  • Access (Windows only)
  • Publisher (Windows only)

Your apps all get the latest updates as long as your subscription remains active. This is significant, as Microsoft regularly adds new features and enhancements into the Microsoft 365 versions of Office apps. See our overview of what’s new in Microsoft 365 for details.

A Microsoft 365 subscription plan also comes with a few extra perks. The biggest benefits are 1TB of OneDrive storage and 60 minutes of Skype credit each month. You also get some special offers from Microsoft partners and access to technical support.

The service is available in two flavors: Personal and Family.

Personal is for one user, while Family is a group plan for up to six users. With Microsoft 365 Family, each person gets the full benefits, meaning they can install Office apps on all their devices and get their own 1TB of OneDrive storage.

What Does Office 2019 Include?

Office 2019 is a one-time purchase of a suite of Office apps for a single Windows PC or Mac. The installation is not tied to your Microsoft account; you activate it with a license key provided at the time of purchase. Anyone who has access to that computer can use the Microsoft Office apps.

The included apps depend on which version of Office 2019 you buy, which we’ll look at in a moment.

Office 2019 apps don’t receive ongoing improvements like their Microsoft 365 counterparts; they only receive security patches. If you want future updates to Microsoft Office, you’ll need to buy the new version when it releases.

Buying Office 2019 does not provide access to the full versions of the Android and iOS Office apps. The standalone version also lacks some of the modern features found in the Microsoft 365 Office apps.

Finally, Office 2019 will only work for so long. Microsoft will offer mainstream support until October 2023 and extended support through October 2025. After 2025, you’ll have to upgrade to avoid using an unsupported version of Office.

This is one of the reasons we think Office 2019 isn’t a good deal for most people. But how do the prices compare?

Microsoft 365 vs. Office 2019: A Value Comparison

Microsoft 365 is available two tiers:

  • Microsoft 365 Personal: $70 per year
  • Microsoft 365 Family: $100 per year

Microsoft 365 Tiers

As discussed, Personal is for one user, while Family provides the same benefits for up to six people. While you can also purchase these plans monthly ($7 per month for Personal or $10 per month for Family), we’ll use the cheaper annual prices here. Chances are that you aren’t interested in subscribing to Office for just a month.

Meanwhile, Office 2019 offers three versions, which are all one-time purchases:

  • Office Home & Student 2019: $150 for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint
  • Office Home & Business 2019: $250 for the above, plus Outlook
  • Office Professional 2019: $440 for the above, plus Publisher and Access (on Windows only)

Office 2019 Pricing

If you wanted to match Office 2019 with Microsoft 365, you’d need to purchase Office 2019 Professional, as well as a OneDrive plan and Skype credits. Outside of Microsoft 365, however, OneDrive’s only available upgrade is 100GB of storage for $2 per month. We’ll use this as an add-on.

It’s also not possible to purchase 60 minutes of Skype credit; the smallest increment you can buy is $5, which is about 217 minutes of calls to several major countries. $1 of Skype credit thus provides about 47 calling minutes, meaning that Microsoft 365’s 12 hours of Skype credit would cost roughly $15.

However, if you’re considering Office 2019, you might not care about the OneDrive storage or Skype credits. Most people also don’t need Access and Publisher. To reflect both real-world scenarios and total value, we’ll thus compare the following setups below:

  1. Microsoft 365 Personal
  2. Microsoft 365 Family
  3. Office Home & Student 2019
  4. Office Home & Student 2019 with 60 minutes of Skype credit and 100GB of OneDrive storage per month
  5. Office Home & Business 2019
  6. Office Home & Business 2019 with 60 minutes of Skype credit and 100GB of OneDrive storage per month
  7. Office Professional 2019

Microsoft 365 vs. Office 2019: One-Year Cost

Office One Year Chart

What do Office 2019 and Microsoft 365 look like in their first year?

Microsoft 365 Personal costs $70, while Microsoft 365 Home costs $100. Office 2019 Home & Student costs $150 upfront.

For the extras we discussed, 100GB of space in OneDrive costs $24 for one year. 12 hours of Skype credit will run you about $15. The total cost is $150 for just Home & Student, or $189 if you opt for the extras.

Office 2019 Home & Business costs $250 for one PC with the same annual costs for OneDrive and Skype. Its total one-year cost is $250, or $289 with the extras.

Finally, if you opt for Office 2019 Professional, you’ll pay $440 as a one-time purchase.

Microsoft 365 vs. Office 2019: Over Five Years

Office Five Year Chart

How do these purchases compare when examined over a span of five years?

The $70 for Microsoft 365 Personal adds up to $350 total for five years. Meanwhile, Microsoft 365 Home’s $100 per year results in a cost of $500 for five years.

Office 2019 Home & Student’s only cost was the initial $150 for one PC. 100GB of OneDrive space is $120 for five years; the Skype credit costs about $75 for 60 hours. The total cost is $150 if you don’t opt for those extras, and $345 if you do.

Next, Office 2019 Home & Business was $250 five years ago. It has the same five-year costs for OneDrive and Skype. Thus, its total cost is $250 for Office only or $445 with OneDrive and Skype.

Last, Office 2019 Professional is still the $440 one-time charge.

Note that since Office 2019 will be out of support five years from the time of writing, using it past this point is not recommended. At that time, you’d need to upgrade to the latest version of Office to avoid using an insecure version. We’ll assume that you do this going forward.

Microsoft 365 vs. Office 2019: Value After 10 Years

Office Ten Year Chart

Say you stick with your chosen Office setup for an entire decade. What will this cost you?

Microsoft’s 365 Personal subscription comes to $700 total for 10 years. And Microsoft 365 Family equals $1,000 over the decade.

In addition to the initial $150 purchase for Office 2019 Home & Student, you upgraded in 2025 for another $150. Subscribing to the 100GB OneDrive plan costs $240 for 10 years. In addition, the Skype credit comes to about $150 for 120 hours.

If you don’t purchase any extras, your initial purchase and upgrade totals $300. With OneDrive and Skype, the total cost over 10 years is $690.

Next, consider Office 2019 Home & Business. The initial cost of $250 still stands, plus another $250 to upgrade at the end of support. The 10-year costs are the same for OneDrive and Skype. This brings us to $500 for Office alone, or $890 with Skype and OneDrive.

Finally, Office 2019 Pro without any extras would cost you the initial $440, plus an upgrade for the same price in 2025. This is a total of $880.

Microsoft 365 vs. Office 2019: Which Is a Better Deal?

Of course, we’ve made some assumptions in these calculations. There’s no guarantee that Microsoft will offer another standalone version of Office to replace Office 2019. Prices may change, and Microsoft could add or remove benefits to Microsoft 365 in the meantime.

We also didn’t cover buying Office apps individually. You can purchase standalone versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Access, or Publisher for $140 each. However, this only makes sense if you’re sure you need just one app. Otherwise, buying one of the Office packages is much more cost-effective.

Now that we’ve looked at the cost across one, five, and 10 years, does Office 2019 or Microsoft 365 provide a better value? That depends on your needs.

If you only need Word, Excel, and PowerPoint on one device:

  • Microsoft 365 Personal is the best value for one year.
  • Office 2019 Home & Student is the best value for five or 10 years.

If you also need Outlook, but only on one device:

  • Microsoft 365 Personal is the best value for one year.
  • Office 2019 Home & Business is the best value for five or 10 years.

If you need Publisher or Access:

  • Microsoft 365 Personal is the best value at every time interval.
  • After five years, $350 for Microsoft 365 Personal is still cheaper than $440 for Office 2019 Professional. And after 10 years, $700 for 10 years of Microsoft 365 Personal beats $880 to buy Office Professional twice.

If you add on OneDrive storage and Skype credit:

  • Microsoft 365 is the best value for one year.
  • Without Outlook, Office 2019 is only $5 cheaper than Microsoft 365 for five years. With Outlook, Microsoft 365 Personal is the better value for five years.
  • Office 2019 is just $10 cheaper than Microsoft 365 Personal at 10 years. However, if you need Outlook, Microsoft 365 is a better value than Office 2019 Home & Business at 10 years.

Keep in mind, though, that the added OneDrive storage is only 100GB if you buy Office 2019. With Microsoft 365, you get 1TB, which is 10 times that amount.

If you need 1TB of OneDrive storage, access on mobile devices, or are buying for multiple people:

  • Microsoft 365 offers the best value.
  • Remember that Office 2019 is only good for one PC or Mac. To get it for multiple devices, you’d have to pay at least $150 per computer, plus that amount again after five years to upgrade.
  • Meanwhile, Microsoft 365 Personal lets you install Office on all your devices, and Family lets up to six people install it on all their devices.

Microsoft 365 Is a Compelling Office Package

From the above, we’ve learned that Microsoft 365 is always a better deal if you’re only buying for a year. If you’re interested in maximum OneDrive space, Microsoft 365 is worth it for that alone: $7/month for 1TB is a steal compared to $2/month for 100GB. And the value is much higher when you bring multiple people into a Family plan.

On the flip side, even with an upgrade after five years, buying Office 2019 can save you some money in the long run if you don’t need any of Microsoft 365’s extras. But we’d only recommend it for people who don’t need Office on multiple devices. It’s best for one computer that you plan to use for a long time.

Did you know that you might not need to pay for Office at all? Check out the best free alternatives to Microsoft Office for other options before you buy it.

Image Credit: Nor Gal/Shutterstock

Read the full article: Microsoft 365 vs. Office 2019: What Are the Differences? Compared

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9 Reasons to Subscribe to Netflix This Year

While there are legitimate reasons to avoid subscribing to Netflix, there are also plenty of reasons TO subscribe to Netflix.

The streaming service today isn’t the same Netflix of five years ago, which may be the last time you considered subscribing. So if you have previously cancelled your Netflix subscription, or have never had access to Netflix, it may be time to reconsider.

From its bevy of original content to its lack of advertising, here are our reasons why you should subscribe to Netflix this year…

1. Netflix Boasts Original Content

netflix originals content preview

Over the past few years, we’ve seen Netflix shift away from licensed content to producing its own content.

To be fair, the original TV series on Netflix are a little hit-and-miss at times. For every Narcos, Stranger Things, and Mindhunter, you get duds.

However, Netflix’s original content has improved significantly over the years, with stellar documentaries, binge-worthy original series, and even horror movies and sci-fi shows. And Netflix continues to invest heavily in original content, meaning that the variety and quality continue to grow.

Get a taste of what you can watch by checking out our roundup of the best original films on Netflix.

2. Netflix Offers More Than Movies and TV Series

netflix documentaries catalog

While feature films and TV series are what put Netflix in the headlines, Netflix actually offers a lot more than just that. You may be surprised to know how much niche content (or even fringe content) exists on the platform. It’s this content that will keep you hooked on the service.

Documentaries have become a Netflix staple, with the streaming service well known for its true crime documentaries. Comedy specials are also a regular addition to the Netflix catalog, while experimental reality shows tend to become viral hits.

Netflix has also experimented with interactive, choose-your-own-adventure content, such as You vs. Wild and Black Mirror: Bandersnatch.

3. You Won’t See Ads on Netflix

Netflix debuted in 1997, which means it has now been around for over two decades. By this point, most other companies would have injected advertising into every nook and cranny they could find. For example, Hulu and CBS All-Access are both subscription-based services with advertisements, forcing you to pay more to remove the ads.

But not Netflix. With Netflix, you don’t have to sit through 30 seconds of cringe-inducing marketing like on Hulu or YouTube. There are no mid-roll ad breaks ruining the immersion and suspense of a narrative. Just on-demand entertainment.

There is some product placement in Netflix series, something that became painfully noticeable in Stranger Things Season 3. However, product placement is just a reality of content nowadays and Netflix seems to have learned its lesson and refrained from such overt product placement in its newer content.

4. One Subscription: Multiple Viewers

netflix multiple devices

There’s a reason you hear about so many people sharing Netflix accounts. The service provides the ability to create up to five different profiles on one account.

Furthermore, Netflix doesn’t limit the number of devices on which you can install and use the Netflix app. Instead, the only limit is the number of screens you can watch Netflix on at the same time. The Basic Plan lets you only stream on one device at a time. However, with a Standard or Premium account, you can simultaneously watch on two or four separate devices, respectively.

Since Netflix analyzes your viewing habits to make recommendations, it’s nice to have one profile for yourself, another for your spouse or roommate, and more for anyone else sharing your account.

5. It’s Easy to Search Through the Netflix Library

netflix browse catalog

Netflix’s browsing features and algorithm for recommendations have never been stellar. However, the service has improved these features significantly. As of 2020, you can now see the top 10 streamed content in your country—a list that is regularly updated.

Browsing categories on the service is also easier, with the homepage split into a variety of popular categories that you can expand to explore more. On the Netflix website, you can hover over series to see their trailers and expand the preview to get more information without leaving the homepage.

Another useful feature is the ability to browse upcoming movies and series and add reminders for when they arrive on the service.

6. Netflix Is Still Relatively Affordable

netflix cost in usa

The Basic plan for Netflix only costs around $9/month. This, taking into consideration the amount of existing content and Netflix’s regular rollout of new originals, means you get access to a vast amount of content for an affordable price.

If you want to stream in HD and on two devices at once, then you’ll want the Standard plan. That’s around $14/month and costs less than some cinema tickets—unlocking an entire library of high-resolution feature films to enjoy whenever you want.

Even the highest Premium plan, available for around $16/month, is relatively affordable—especially considering it’s the starting price for some other streaming services. But most users probably don’t need it. The only extra benefits are the ability to watch certain titles in 4K Ultra HD and the ability to stream on up to four simultaneous devices.

Regardless of the plan you choose, the value-per-dollar for Netflix subscriptions is appealing.

7. You’ll Be Spending More Time at Home in 2020

2020 will be remembered as the year COVID-19 changed everything. Even when lockdowns are lifted, life won’t return to normal for months and social distancing will remain the norm for the foreseeable future.

This means that you’ll be spending a lot more time at home this year. An affordable streaming service that regularly rolls out new content alongside a vast catalog of older content provides a useful way to kill boredom while stuck at home.

8. Netflix Brings New Creators to the Global Stage

netflix independent movies

Netflix’s freedom from needing to worry about box office returns or prime-time ratings means that it has diverged from the typical Hollywood formula. This gives it the ability to fund and distribute independent content from creators outside of Hollywood and even the United States.

This has resulted in unique stories and voices entering the global stage. In 2019, Roma became the first Mexican film to win an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film. Meanwhile the Netflix original series Orange Is the New Black has been nominated for and won multiple Emmy Awards while being celebrated for its diverse cast of women.

Netflix has also increasingly invested in International Netflix Originals, bringing global audiences critically acclaimed content such as Dark, 3%, and Kingdom. Meanwhile, discontinued foreign TV shows are often picked up and continued by the streaming service, such as the acclaimed Money Heist.

In many ways, Netflix provides access to the global stage for lesser-known creators and unique stories that may have never reached international audiences otherwise. And by subscribing to Netflix, you’re supporting this effort.

9. Netflix Allows Educational Screenings

When it comes to screenings of Netflix’s original documentaries, the streaming service grants permission to educators that want to show them to their students. This contrasts with some other studios and distributors, which require schools to buy licenses to show content to students.

While educators can’t stream family movies or series to students, the availability of documentaries provides useful educational content without requiring schools to pay for licenses.

Furthermore, when many students moved to learning from home in 2020, Netflix made some of its documentaries free to watch on YouTube. Subscribing to Netflix helps fund the continued creation of educational content like this.

So, Are You Going to Subscribe to Netflix?

So now you know the various reasons you should consider subscribing to Netflix this year. And you may even have the Netflix website open, ready and waiting.

If so, check out our ultimate guide to Netflix. And if not, check out our list of the best streaming TV services for alternatives.

Read the full article: 9 Reasons to Subscribe to Netflix This Year

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Is Disney+ Worth Getting and Worth the Money?

These days, there are a lot of streaming services available to choose from. So much so that it’s difficult to decide which ones are worth getting and which ones represent good value for money. And that includes Disney+.

In this article, we’ll help you decide whether Disney+ is worth getting for the money. We’ll also compare Disney+—which offers access to movies and shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, and National Geographic—to other streaming services.

How Much Does Disney+ Cost?

Disney+ banner with seven-day free trial button

At $6.99/month (in the US), Disney+ is one of the cheapest paid streaming services available. For that price, you can add seven profiles to your account and watch movies or TV shows on four devices at a time.

You can also sign up for a one year subscription with an upfront payment of $69.99. That’s the equivalent of $5.83/month, making Disney+ even cheaper.

If you aren’t ready to sign up to Disney+ just yet, you can try out Disney+ for yourself with a seven-day free trial.

Disney+ content is available to stream or download on almost every device you own, including your TV, smartphone, tablet, and laptop. And you don’t need to pay extra to unlock 4K video, which is the case for some of the best streaming TV services.

There are absolutely no adverts and the service is packed with thousands of hours of content.

How the Price of Disney+ Compares to Other Services

The biggest competitors to Disney+ are Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu. Each of these services offers a wider range of plans, with certain features locked behind paywalls. Other streaming services also exist, like Apple TV+, but since Apple is limited to original content its library pales in comparison to the competition.

Netflix offers three subscription plans: Basic, Standard, and Premium. The Basic plan costs $8.99/month—which is already more expensive than Disney+—and only lets you watch standard definition videos on a single screen at a time.

Amazon also offers a basic Prime Video subscription for $8.99/month. But most people go for the $12.99/month option to get unlimited music streaming, photo storage, and reading as well. You can watch Prime Video movies or TV shows on three different screens at once. And since it’s Amazon Prime, you also get free two-day shipping.

Amazon Prime video subscription plans

Also owned by Disney, Hulu is the only option with a lower subscription fee at $5.99/month. That said, you can still get Disney+ cheaper by signing up for an entire year. You also need to pay more for Hulu if you want to unlock extra channels or get rid of the adverts.

What You Get With Disney+

Disney+ home screen with franchise buttons and banner

Disney+ includes Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic, and Disney content. This collection covers an enormous number of TV shows alongside some of the best movies ever made.

We’ve already written about the best movies and TV shows to watch on Disney+. However, the highlights include Disney’s animated feature films, the Star Wars movies, and the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Considering that many of these movies still sell for $20 each on the iTunes Store, getting access to all of them for $5.99/month makes Disney+ a pretty good deal.

Original Disney+ Content

Most of the movies you’re likely to watch on Disney+ were enormously successful releases. That means you’ve probably seen them several times already and you might even own them on DVD or Blu-ray. In the long run, you’re probably going to be more interested in Disney’s original content.

The Mandalorian is the biggest show on Disney+. And it’s possibly the only one worth talking about. There aren’t a huge number of original titles yet, and while many of them are enjoyable, none has taken the world by storm like The Mandalorian (mainly thanks to “Baby Yoda”).

Selection of Disney+ original shows

Disney+ will also be the home to future Marvel and Star Wars live-action shows. These are expected to include The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, WandaVision, and more live-action Star Wars spinoffs. Many of these shows are likely to tie-in to future cinematic releases, meaning they will be essential viewing for a lot of fans.

Take note that Disney releases original episodes weekly. So if you want to binge an entire season in one month, you should wait until every episode is released before you sign up.

How the Content Library Compares to Other Services

Because Disney owns the rights to all of this content, Disney+ is likely to have a more stable library than other services. While movies frequently appear and disappear from Netflix, Amazon Prime, or Hulu, those that are on Disney+ are there to stay.

However, this stability comes at a cost: Disney’s library isn’t as broad or varied as other services. Most of the TV shows are from The Disney Channel and everything is family-friendly.

In contrast, other services give you fresh movies or TV shows all the time as they cycle content through the platform. You also get a wider range of viewing options, with Hulu offering everything from Family Guy to Teen Titans, for example.

Variety of content from Hulu

What You Don’t Get With Disney+

Disney has a well-established brand to maintain, which means there is no mature content available on Disney+. Everything is rated PG-13 or lower, making it a perfect safe space for kids, but a little too sanitized for adults.

Don’t expect to find shows like Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead on Disney+ any time soon.

What’s more, each of the major franchises on Disney+ is better known for its movies than its TV shows. As a result, there’s a disappointing lack of quality TV shows for you to watch when you don’t have time to watch a full movie.

20th Century Fox Content

In 2019, Disney purchased 20th Century Fox. However, there isn’t much Fox content on the platform yet. It’s possible this is because Disney needs to maintain its family-friendly brand, which isn’t possible if it offers up Family Guy, Die Hard, and the Alien movies to stream.

At the moment, the only major Fox titles available on Disney+ are The Simpsons, Avatar, and some of the X-Men movies. Still, there’s no Deadpool and no Logan because those were both rated R.

X-Men movies and TV shows on Disney+

It’s possible that Disney will filter more Fox content into its platform in the future. This would make Disney+ more worthwhile for adult subscribers. However, some speculators predict that that’s what Disney intends to use Hulu for instead.

Is Disney+ Worth Getting for the Money?

If you like the look of the movies and TV shows available to watch on Disney+ then it’s well worth the money. Purely in terms of the numbers, the subscription fee is cheap compared to a lot of other streaming services. And you get access to a lot of popular and highly-rated movies.

If you have children who might enjoy Disney Channel titles and Marvel cartoons, there’s a seemingly endless number of TV shows for them to watch as well. However, there aren’t a great deal of quality shows for adults outside of The Mandalorian and The Simpsons.

Hopefully that changes in the future as Disney releases more originals and/or introduces more 20th Century Fox content. But only time will tell.

To summarize, Disney+ is absolutely worth getting if you want to watch Pixar, Star Wars, Marvel, and Disney movies, plus some interesting documentaries courtesy of National Geographic. There are also plenty of classic films worth watching on Disney+.

Read the full article: Is Disney+ Worth Getting and Worth the Money?

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No, Netflix Isn’t Offering Free Subscriptions Due to Coronavirus

If you receive a text or email offering you a free Netflix subscription due to COVID-19, ignore it, as it’s a scam. While that may sound like common sense to most of you, there will be people out there who fall for the promise of a free Netflix subscription.

While most of us are stepping up during this time of crisis, some are seeing it as an opportunity to scam people out of their money and/or personal information. And the latest scam doing the rounds is a message offering free passes for Netflix.

A Netflix Scam Is Doing the Rounds

As first reported by Business Insider, people have been receiving messages claiming that Netflix is giving away “free passes”. The messages claim that this is “due to the coronavirus pandemic,” with Netflix keen to help people isolating at home.

This is absolutely untrue, and Netflix is NOT giving away free passes. No such promotion exists, and it doesn’t matter how legitimate the message may appear to be. Some companies are offering some content for free, but Netflix is not one of them.

On the contrary, Netflix is one of the few companies likely to do well out of the COVID-19 pandemic. People are subscribing to streaming services in their droves as they’re looking for things to do while they’re locked down or quarantined at home.

Use Your Common Sense to Detect Scams

As with most scams, common sense is key. Look for dodgy URLs, typos, and offers that are clearly too good to be true. As this one is. Given that subscriptions are on the rise Netflix is hardly likely to give away free passes, coronavirus or otherwise.

OK, so you’re not going to get Netflix for free, but we still think Netflix is worth paying for. If you want to see proof of this, be sure to cast your eye over our guide to becoming a Netflix pro. This contains all of the tips, tricks, and recommendations you’ll need.

Image Credit: Global Panorama/Flickr

Read the full article: No, Netflix Isn’t Offering Free Subscriptions Due to Coronavirus

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No, Netflix Isn’t Offering Free Subscriptions Due to Coronavirus

If you receive a text or email offering you a free Netflix subscription due to COVID-19, ignore it, as it’s a scam. While that may sound like common sense to most of you, there will be people out there who fall for the promise of a free Netflix subscription.

While most of us are stepping up during this time of crisis, some are seeing it as an opportunity to scam people out of their money and/or personal information. And the latest scam doing the rounds is a message offering free passes for Netflix.

A Netflix Scam Is Doing the Rounds

As first reported by Business Insider, people have been receiving messages claiming that Netflix is giving away “free passes”. The messages claim that this is “due to the coronavirus pandemic,” with Netflix keen to help people isolating at home.

This is absolutely untrue, and Netflix is NOT giving away free passes. No such promotion exists, and it doesn’t matter how legitimate the message may appear to be. Some companies are offering some content for free, but Netflix is not one of them.

On the contrary, Netflix is one of the few companies likely to do well out of the COVID-19 pandemic. People are subscribing to streaming services in their droves as they’re looking for things to do while they’re locked down or quarantined at home.

Use Your Common Sense to Detect Scams

As with most scams, common sense is key. Look for dodgy URLs, typos, and offers that are clearly too good to be true. As this one is. Given that subscriptions are on the rise Netflix is hardly likely to give away free passes, coronavirus or otherwise.

OK, so you’re not going to get Netflix for free, but we still think Netflix is worth paying for. If you want to see proof of this, be sure to cast your eye over our guide to becoming a Netflix pro. This contains all of the tips, tricks, and recommendations you’ll need.

Image Credit: Global Panorama/Flickr

Read the full article: No, Netflix Isn’t Offering Free Subscriptions Due to Coronavirus

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New in iOS 13.4: detailed Apple Card transaction history for subscriptions

iOS 13.4 enables richer Apple Card transaction history for App Store purchases and subscriptions in the Wallet app.
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Apple Family Sharing Explained: What You Need to Know and How to Use It

Apple’s Family Sharing is a way to make your apps, movies, subscriptions, and more available to all the people in your family. You can also use it to control the screen time or content restrictions for your children’s devices. What’s more, it can even let you keep an eye on the location of all your loved ones.

We’ve written this guide to explain everything you need to know about setting up and using Apple’s Family Sharing service. Let’s take a look at how it works.

What Is Family Sharing?

Family Sharing lets you connect up to six different Apple ID accounts together. These accounts form your Family Sharing group, which you can use to save money by sharing various Apple purchases and services, including:

  • Apps, movies, TV shows, songs, and books
  • Apple Music family plan subscriptions
  • Apple Arcade, Apple News+, and Apple TV channel subscriptions
  • iCloud storage

Since everybody has their own account, you don’t need to share your password with other people. You can also access content in your Family Sharing group from any device you use with your Apple ID: iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple TV, or even a Windows PC.

Music, Movies, Books, and Apps on iPhone shared with Family Sharing
Image Credit: Apple

Alongside shared purchases and services, Family Sharing automatically creates a shared reminders list, shared calendar, and shared photo album for you all to use. With permission, you can even use Family sharing to see the location of everyone in your group, as well as all their Apple devices.

Finally, with Family Sharing, parents or guardians can manage the Screen Time or Content & Privacy Restrictions for any children under 18 in the group. With Ask to Buy turned on, they can also approve or deny App Store and iTunes purchases their kids want to make.

You Can’t Share Everything

Unfortunately, not everything is available to share with Family Sharing. Before purchasing an app, scroll down to the Information section in the App Store to check that it supports Family Sharing.

Notably, you also can’t share in-app purchases or subscriptions for non-Apple services.

App Store showing Family Sharing support in Information section

How to Set Up Family Sharing

Whoever creates the Family Sharing group becomes the Family Organizer. This person chooses who is and isn’t allowed in the group, and also chooses which services or purchases you share with Family Sharing.

If the Family Organizer chooses to share App Store and iTunes purchases, they must also agree to pay for new purchases that anyone in the Family Sharing group makes.

It’s easy to set up Family Sharing from an iPhone or Mac, provided it’s running at least iOS 8 or OS X Yosemite, respectively.

Set Up Family Sharing on an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch

  1. Go to Settings and tap [Your Name] at the top of the screen. If you don’t see your name, choose to Sign in to your [device] using your Apple ID account.
  2. Tap Set Up Family Sharing, then choose Get Started and choose the first feature you want to use with Family Sharing. You may need to add a payment method to your Apple ID account if you don’t already have one.
  3. Follow the onscreen prompts to complete the setup and Invite Family Members, which you can do using iMessage or by asking them to sign in on your device.
  4. After creating your group, the Family Sharing settings appear beneath your name. You can also tap Add Family Member to add more people to your family.

Set Up Family Sharing on a Mac

  1. Open the Apple menu and go to System Preferences > Family Sharing.
  2. You should see instructions to Set up Family Sharing; click Next and follow the onscreen prompts to complete the setup. You may need to add a payment method to your Apple ID account if you don’t already have one.
  3. Once the setup is complete, click Add Family Member and enter the name, email address, or Game Center nickname of the first family member you want to add.
  4. Use the sidebar in System Preferences to edit the various Family Sharing settings. Go to Family to add more people to your Family Sharing group.

Mac Family Sharing System Preferences

Set Up a Child’s Account in Family Sharing

Children under 13 cannot create their own Apple ID accounts. However, with Family Sharing, the Family Organizer can create a child’s account for them. Apple limits the apps and media based on your child’s age and automatically turns on Ask to Buy. This means they can’t download or purchase anything without permission, even if it’s free.

To create a child’s account, open the Family Sharing settings on your device and follow the prompts to add a new family member. Select the option to Create a Child Account. Then create an iCloud email address, a password, and security answers for your child.

Family Members with Add Family Member option in iPhone Family Sharing settings

As a Family Organizer or parent/guardian in the Family Sharing group, you can remotely approve or deny App Store and iTunes purchases, track your child’s Screen Time, or edit the Content & Privacy Restrictions for your child’s device.

Apple’s Family Sharing Features Explained

After creating your Family Sharing group, you will see a lot of different features and services you can choose to use with it. This many options can seem a little overwhelming at first, so we’ve explained each Family Sharing feature below.

Family Sharing Shared Features settings on iPhone

Purchase Sharing

If you want to share apps, movies, TV shows, songs, and books in your Family Sharing group, you need to turn on Purchase Sharing. When doing this, the Family Organizer must agree to pay for any future purchases people in your Family Sharing group make.

Family members get to keep their purchases after leaving the Family Sharing group, even if the Family Organizer paid for that purchase originally.

To view another person’s purchases, open the App Store or iTunes Store app and go to the Purchases page. You should see each of your family members’ names; tap one to view or download their purchases.

Family Purchases in App Store on iPhone

Purchase Sharing lets your family access everything you’ve ever bought or downloaded, even if you did so before joining the Family Sharing group. If you want to hide a particular purchase from your family, swipe on that purchase and choose to Hide it.

iCloud Storage

Apple gives everybody 5GB of free storage to use with their Apple ID account. Each family member can decide to expand their storage for a small monthly fee, or you can choose to share a single storage plan across your Family Sharing group.

iCloud storage showing Family Usage amount

To share iCloud storage with Family Sharing, you either need the 200GB or the 2TB plan. When a family member chooses to share iCloud storage, Apple doesn’t add their free 5GB to the shared plan.

Location Sharing

With Location Sharing turned on in Family Sharing, you can use the Find My app on your iPhone, iPad, or Mac to check where your other family members are. You can also use Find My to locate your family members’ missing Apple devices.

Each family member can choose whether they want to share their location from the Family Sharing settings on their device.

Find My app showing family member locations with stars next to them

You should be careful with this setting. When Location Sharing is turned on, anyone in your Family Sharing group can use the Find My app to mark your devices as lost or remotely erase them.

Screen Time

Turn on Screen Time to monitor any children in your Family Sharing group under the age of 18. You can choose to set App Limits, Communication Limits, Downtime, and Content & Privacy Restrictions on your children’s devices.

Screen Time setting options for child's Family Sharing account

Family Sharing also gives you regular usage reports so you can keep an eye on how much your children use their devices.

Apple Music, TV Channels, Apple Arcade, and Apple News+

Apple now offers a lot of different subscription services. And except for Apple Music (which requires a family plan), you can share any of these subscriptions with your Family Sharing group at no extra cost.

For example, if you subscribe to Apple Arcade, everyone else in your Family Sharing group can also access Apple Arcade games without needing to sign up for their own subscription.

To share Apple Music, you need to pay a little bit more to get a Family Sharing plan. It still works out cheaper than paying individually, though.

Apple subscriptions services settings in Family Sharing on iPhone

Apple Isn’t the Only Company to Offer Family Sharing

Plenty of other companies offer sharing services similar to Apple’s setup. Now that we’ve explained how to use Apple’s Family Sharing service, it’s worth taking a moment to learn what’s on offer elsewhere as well.

That way, you can be certain you’re getting the best service for your particular needs. For instance, if you use more Google apps than Apple ones, you might have a lot more to gain from setting up a Google Play Family Sharing group instead. Don’t forget that many streaming services have family plans, too.

Read the full article: Apple Family Sharing Explained: What You Need to Know and How to Use It