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Best streaming service deals for Prime Day 2021

Amazon is offering three months of the Disney Bundle and discounts on Prime Video channels.

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This story is part of Amazon Prime Day 2021, CNET's guide to everything you need to know and how to make sure you get the best deal.

Amazon Prime Day is here, and in addition to deals on streaming players and TVs, the monthly subscription costs of streaming TV services themselves are getting discounts too. Amazon is offering three free months of the Disney PlusHulu and ESPN bundle -- a $42 value -- if you buy a qualifying Fire TV streamer or Fire tablet. It's also discounting some of its Prime Video Channels, including Showtime, Starz and Discovery Plus.

Beyond Prime Day, there are plenty of other discounts on services, including Paramount PlusNetflix, HBO Maxand Peacock. Bundles with home internet or phone service can get you a free subscription to Netflix, Disney Plus, HBO Max or Peacock Premium, while students get cheap Hulu and people who buy the new Chromecast with Google TV get half a year of Netflix.

Let's break them all down. 

Read more: Best streaming service of 2021

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As you'd expect for Prime Day Amazon is discounting its own Fire TV streamers and Fire tablets heavily -- and adding a new sweetener. Purchase one at Amazon before Prime Day ends and you'll get a promo code entitling you to three free months of the Disney Bundle, which gets you Disney Plus, Hulu and ESPN Plus. 

The cheapest device that qualifies for the offer is the Fire TV Stick Lite, currently on sale for $18 and pictured above. The offer is valid for "new and eligible returning subscribers (who have not been Disney Plus, Hulu or ESPN Plus subscribers in the past thirty (30) days) only" according to Amazon. See all qualifying devices and other terms here.

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Amazon sells subscriptions to streaming services through its Prime Video Channels, allowing you to add additional content from other providers right into your Prime Video app. For this year's Prime Day, the retail giant is offering deep discounts on a host of these services and allowing you to sign up for two months of, say, Showtime, for $1 per month (normally $11 per month). 

A number of other premium channels and streaming options are taking part in this deal, including Starz (normally $9 per month), Paramount Plus Premium (normally $10 per month), Discovery Plus (normally $7 per month) and AMC Plus (normally $9 per month). The deal is available now and runs through June 22.

Learn more about Prime Video Channels.

 

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T-Mobile, through its Netflix on Us perk, has long offered free Netflix on some of its unlimited plans, including its Magenta and Magenta Plus plans as well as its new Magenta Max option. Older plans, called One and One Plus, also have Netflix included, though exactly which version of Netflix will vary. 

Higher-end options like Magenta Plus, Max and One Plus likely have Netflix Standard (the most popular version of Netflix that runs $14 per month and streams in HD) included so long as you have multiple lines. Those with one line of Max or the base Magenta plan will get Netflix Basic included (the non-HD $9 per month version of Netflix). Full details, including what you would need to pay if you wanted to upgrade to a higher plan like the 4K-capable Netflix Premium, can be found on T-Mobile's website

Note: It's one Netflix subscription per T-Mobile account, not per individual line.

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AT&T, which owns HBO Max, bundles in the ad-free version of the WarnerMedia streaming service with a number of its wireless, TV and home internet plans -- though it's likely only on the priciest options. Today, that means you can get a free HBO Max subscription with its Unlimited Elite wireless plan or fastest 1 Gig internet plans. AT&T is also offering one-year subscriptions with its Choice or Ultimate AT&T TV packages. 

Beyond its existing offers, the telecom giant also includes HBO Max with some legacy wireless offers. Older plans with HBO Max bundled in include Unlimited Choice, Unlimited Choice II, Unlimited Enhanced Choice, Unlimited Plus, Unlimited Enhanced Plus and Unlimited &More. Full details for activating HBO Max can be found on AT&T's website

Note: It's one HBO Max subscription per AT&T account, not per individual line. 

If you don't have AT&T, you can save $30 by prepaying for a year of HBO Max. This will make the ad-free option $150 for the year or the ad-supported option $100.

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Whereas T-Mobile has Netflix and AT&T has HBO Max, the nation's largest carrier has Disney. 

On its recent wireless plans, the carrier includes the Disney Bundle -- subscriptions to Disney Plus, Hulu and ESPN Plus that run a combined $14 a month -- with its Play More and Get More unlimited plans. Other plans, such as its most affordable Start and Do More plans, have six months of Disney Plus included, but not the bundle. 

Verizon allows mixing and matching unlimited plans, so as long as one line on your account has a Play More or Get More plan you will be able to get the perk. Note that it is only one Disney subscription per Verizon account, not per individual line. 

The deal works for both new and existing Disney Plus subscribers, so if you already have a subscription you can either cancel or if you have the six-month trial, have the Verizon subscription run first and then have your regular subscription continue after. 

Those with a Play More Unlimited or Get More Unlimited plan from before August 2020 have been able to get Disney Plus for one year, though if you haven't activated it yet you'd only get six months of Disney Plus. If you switch to the updated version of either plan you'll be able to get the Disney Bundle.

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Paramount Plus normally runs $10 per month for its commercial-free (and live-CBS-included) offering. On June 7 the company added a new option that drops the live CBS feeds and has "limited commercial interruptions" that runs $6 per month, in the process replacing a previous $5 per month plan. 

Prepaying for a year of either can effectively net you two months free, with the ad-free version running $100 for the year (a $20 savings) and the ad-supported tier running $60 (a $12 savings).

Sarah Tew/CNET

Verizon and Sling have teamed up to offer new and existing Verizon wireless, Fios and 5G Home users the option to get free Sling TV for two months. Normally $35 per month, the two packages offer live TV, including TBS, TNT and CNN, with the Blue package also including the NFL Network, Fox News, MSNBC and (in some markets) the local feeds of NBC and Fox. The Orange package lacks those latter channels but does offer ESPN. 

Sling is also offering the option of two free months for either its International package (up to $35 per month) or its Latino package (up to $15 per month) instead. Existing Sling TV users are not eligible for the deal, and full details can be found on Verizon's site.

Sarah Tew/CNET

At $14 per month the Disney bundle saves you $5 each month over the cost of separate Disney PlusESPN Plus and Hulu subscriptions, which is basically the same as getting ESPN Plus for free. 

If you've already got a Hulu or ESPN account, you'll need to combine your accounts on your desktop. Here's a guide on what to do.

Those not on T-Mobile or who don't want to switch their plans should look at Google and Netflix's bundling of six months of a Standard subscription with a Chromecast with Google TV. First introduced last year, the offer combines Google's excellent streaming dongle with Netflix Standard for $90. A six-month Netflix subscription on its own would be nearly $84 while Google's device normally runs $50. 

The deal is capped at three purchases per customer but you can add the Netflix credit even if you already have an account (so long as that account isn't through a third party like T-Mobile). If you decide to return the Chromecast and keep the Netflix, $50 would be refunded, making the six months of Netflix only $40, a savings of $44 over what you'd regularly pay.

Sarah Tew/CNET

T-Mobile has shut down its TVision live TV service and replaced it with a discount on YouTube TV. Normally $65 per month, YouTube TV is our favorite live TV streaming service for cord-cutters who want a wide selection of live channels without subscribing to cable. 

This deal is available to any current T-Mobile wireless or home internet service customer. It's available until July 31.

Read our YouTube TV review.

 

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Don't need all those YouTube TV channels? Philo is a similar service but with fewer channels -- it doesn't include any sports, news or local channels, for example -- at a much lower price. Normally $20 per month, this deal cuts the price of Philo in half. 

Just like the YouTube TV deal, this one is available to pretty much any T-Mobile subscriber. It's available through June 31 with promo code 2021PhiloP1.

Read our Philo review.

 

Spotify

Beyond getting Hulu in the Verizon bundle, there are a few ways to save on Disney's other streaming service. 

Students will want to check out Spotify's Premium Student offer which combines Spotify Premium, Hulu's ad-supported plan and Showtime for $5 per month. All told, the bundle would save nearly $22 per month. You need to be a student above the age of 18 who is "enrolled at a US Title IV accredited college or university" to qualify, and Spotify works with a third party called SheerID to verify that you are eligible. 

You will need to verify eligibility every 12 months, with the offer available for a total of four years. Full details can be found at Spotify's site.

Angela Lang/CNET

College students who don't want the Spotify and Showtime bundle can get the ad-supported Hulu for $2 per month. Hulu similarly uses SheerID to verify eligibility, with more details available on Hulu's site.

Discovery Plus

Another recent entrant, Discovery's streaming service runs $5 per month for its ad-supported option and $7 for the ad-free plan. As with Disney Plus, the best way to get this for free is through Verizon. 

The telecom giant is offering a year of Discovery Plus' ad-free tier for free with certain unlimited wireless plans as well as new subscribers to its Fios and 5G Home internet plans. 

Wireless users will need to have either a Play More or Get More plan to get the deal, while other unlimited plans, including its Verizon Unlimited plan, Go Unlimited, Beyond Unlimited, Above Unlimited, Do More Unlimited and Start Unlimited, can get a free six months. Full details can be found on Verizon's website.

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Comcast, which owns Peacock and its parent NBCUniversal, includes a subscription to the $5-per-month Peacock Premium for all Xfinity Flex users as well as its Xfinity X1 and video customers who subscribe to at least the "Xfinity Internet or Digital Starter TV" internet and TV packages. More details can be found on Peacock's site

Cable company Cox is also giving away the $5-per-month Peacock Premium subscription to those who have Cox Internet with a Contour TV Essential or higher plan. Those with Cox Internet and a subscription to Contour Stream Player or Contour TV Starter can "enjoy a limited-time preview" of Peacock Premium "at no additional cost." Full details can be found on Cox's site

If you don't have Cox or Comcast, you can purchase an annual Peacock subscription for either $50 a year for ad-supported Premium or $100 per year for ad-free Premium Plus.

Expired

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The new kid on the streaming block, Paramount Plus replaced CBS All Access on March 4. 

In a bid to drive new subscribers, ViacomCBS is once again offering a deal where you could prepay for your first year at 50% off this time with promo code YEAR. The service currently charges $6 per month for its base tier with ads (or $60 if purchased annually), while the ad-free option runs $10 per month ($100 annually). Under the offer, an annual subscription for ad-supported Paramount Plus would run $30 while the ad-free option would be $50. 

Note: In June the price for the ad-supported option will become $5 per month as ViacomCBS adjusts the plan, notably removing live CBS feeds and not offering the full catalog available on the service. 

This deal expired on March 31.

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If you already have standard HBO you likely can get HBO Max for free, while numerous AT&T wireless plans also include free HBO Max (see below). If you're in neither camp but still looking to save, you can get 20% off six-months of HBO Max if you prepay, which would amount to a $20 savings compared to the regular $15 per month rate. 

The deal expired on March 1. 

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Peacock is adding the WWE to its platform on March 18, and to celebrate, the NBCUniversal streaming service is offering a deal to new users where you can sign up and get four months of Peacock's normally $5-per-month Premium offering for one flat rate payment of $10. This version will have access to Peacock's full library, though you will still need to watch ads. 

This deal expired on April 9.