Seemingly overnight, the aura of invincibility that used to surround Netflix has disappeared: Its stock has lost two-thirds of its value, hundreds of staffers have been laid off, and spending is being scrutinized at every level. The once-unstoppable platform’s grasp on the streaming crown is clearly slipping. But this fall from grace hasn’t happened in a vacuum: Rival platforms such as Disney+ and HBO Max are using their deep libraries of beloved IP to snag subscribers and the pop-culture spotlight. The result? A streaming universe that looks much different from a year ago, when we first set out to determine the hottest streamer around — and Netflix came out on top. To figure out where things stand now, we once again evaluated platforms in five different areas, including overall size, critical buzz, and how they’re regarded by Hollywood and Wall Street insiders. Our new list features the same seven platforms as before with the addition of Paramount+ (which had been operating for barely three months last time around). And like before, we tallied the scores in each category to arrive at a final ranking. Spoiler alert: Netflix didn’t win.
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