With its free Netflix offering, Verizon clearly hopes that you’ll see the benefit of managing lots of services in one place, and that you’ll start using it for other services as well. But like any other subscription marketplace, Verizon +play comes with some caveats:
Some subscriptions might cost more. Verizon +play won’t always give you the best price on streaming services. Paramount+, for instance, is available for free with monthly coupon codes, and other services such as Starz and AMC+ routinely offer deals for new subscribers. You can’t get those deals through +play.
Verizon also doesn’t offer annual billing for certain subscriptions such as HBO Max and NBA League Pass. Instead, you can only sign up for monthly plans that cost more over time. Don’t sign up for anything through +play unless you’re sure a better deal isn’t available elsewhere.
It won’t cover all your subscriptions. Many popular TV services remain unavailable through +play, including Amazon Prime Video, Peacock, Apple TV+, MLB TV, YouTube TV, Sling TV, and Philo. Verizon doesn’t even offer the full Disney bundle through +play, which is amusing given that the carrier provides it for free or with an extended trial on some wireless plans. Even if you consolidate some subscriptions through +play, you’ll still have keep track of more subscriptions in other places.
Leaving Verizon can be a hassle. Verizon says you can keep using +play even after switching carriers, but you’ll need to set a username other than your Verizon phone number, and you’ll lose any deals or promo prices that were tied to your Verizon plan. That bit of extra friction might dissuade you from leaving Verizon in the first place.
Ultimately, Verizon +play represents yet another way to pay for TV when we already have too many. While it may alleviate some of your subscription headaches, it won’t eliminate them outright, and Netflix deal aside, it may prompt you to pay more for streaming than you otherwise would.
Like any bundler that claims to solve your streaming headaches, Verizon introduces a few new ones as well.