If you’re in the market for some fine non-fictional documentaries and web series then there’s no better place to start than CuriosityStream.
This VOD service is designed specifically for those keen on learning new things and while it’s not as popular as other top over the air applications, CuriosityStream is definitely gaining some recognition worldwide.
So, if this is something you’d like to explore then read on to find out more about CuriosityStream plans and features available to customers this year.
CuriosityStream Plans & Features – Reviewed
What is CuriosityStream?
CuriosityStream is an online platform that hosts thousands of unique licensed documentaries that cover a vast range of topics such as technology, science and history.
It was first launched in 2015 by John Hedricks who had previously founded and set up Discovery Channel network and has been growing at a rapid pace since then.
As of 2022, CuriosityStream has well over 15 million paid subscribers worldwide and the numbers are expected to grow to over 20 million subscribers by the end of 2023.
How Much Does CuriosityStream Cost?
CuriosityStream currently offers four premium subscription plans to their customers.
The first plan is the cheapest and is the HD Annual plan which costs $19.99 per year.
This plan is available as a monthly plan as well as a yearly subscription, and the cost you’d pay for the service is discounted by up to 50% if you opt for the yearly plan.
For those looking to upgrade to 4K then you can choose the yearly 4K plan which costs $69.99 and the same equates to $5.83 per month as opposed to the monthly plan that costs $9.99.
You can get access to one of these plans at a cheaper rate if you decide to purchase a subscription during the holidays like Thanksgiving or Black Friday.
Does CuriosityStream offer a Free Trial?
Technically, CuriosityStream does not offer any free trial to their services if you purchase a subscription plan directly from their website.
However if you do sign up for CuriosityStream via Amazon Prime or ROKU then you will be eligible to test their platform for a period of 7-days.
You can also cancel your trial without being charged for the trial period.
What Content is Available on CuriosityStream?
CuriosityStream currently hosts over 3000 titles where 900 are exclusive only to CuriosityStream.
The company plans to expand their library to over 11,000 unique titles within a span of 5 years.
CuriosityStream offers documentaries and content on History, Lifestyle, Nature, Science, Technology and Society.
Here are some of the most notable titles available on CuriosityStream that you can watch with a subscription today.
- Light on Earth
- Ant Mountain
- Dream the Future
- Empire of the Tsars
- Out of the Cradle
- Amazing Dinoworld
- History of Food
- Happiness Is on the Plate
- The Body
- 4th and Forever: Muck City
- Living Universe
- Redesign My Brain
- Magic Numbers
- Ice Age Giants
- Ice Age; What is Reality
- Exploring Quantum History With Brian Greene
- The Celts: Blood, Iron & Sacrifice
- Catching History’s Criminals: The Forensics Story
- Super Fish, the historical conflicts between us and our tasty underwater friends
- Queen Victoria’s Letters: A Monarch Unveiled
- Order and Disorder
- The Beginning and End of the Universe
- The Secret Lives of Big Cats
And many many more..
Does CuiosityStream Offer Original Content?
In terms of original content, CuriosityStream provides unique shows and documentaries that are not available on other platforms.
Some of the popular original titles available are:
- 4th and Forever: Alcoa
- Cheetah: Beating the Odds
- These Birds Were Made for Walking
- Monkey Mayhem
- Sloth Bear: Birth of a Prince
- The History of Home
Using the CuriosityStream App and Website
The CuriosityStream website and app are pretty straightforward to use and all you need is an updated browser running on Windows 10 and higher or Android 5/iOS 9 and above to play the content that’s available.
Using the CuriosityStream Website
I was able to sign into the website using my phone and password. It also provided me with an option to login using a TV or network provider.
I decided to login using my email address and was taken straight to the home page.
The UI is smooth and the theme is quite pleasant to look at and features a gray and yellow color scheme that’s easy on the eyes.
At the top of the website there are four primary options, Browse, Collections, Search and Account.
In the account section I could view and edit my plan details, payment information and other account related information.
On the main home screen I found a bunch of highlighted programs to watch and as I scrolled down I came across different sections dedicated to particular genres such as Ancient History, Dinos, Spooky Stuff and more.
Upon clicking the browse button at the top of the page I was taken to a list of categories as well as subcategories that made it easier to select what I want to watch.
Highlighting each thumbnail showed me information about the documentary such as a summary, length, rating and if subtitles are available.
Using the CuriosityStream App
I tested the CuriosityStream app on my iPhone and right after logging into the app using my email address I was taken to a smaller version of the desktop page.
Unlike the website, the mobile app does not play a preview of the highlighted program and instead there’s a static image in place.
All the menu options are placed at the bottom of the screen and I could easily toggle between programs, browse new programs, collections and even setting for the app.
While opening a documentary I wanted to watch I was taken to the shows page which had information like a small description of the show, reviews, ratings and options to share the show, like or dislike, save and even add it to a playlist of my choice.
Underneath the description is a list of shows and documentaries that are similar in nature and upon playing the documentary the video was automatically rotated to fit landscape mode which made it all the more easier to use.
CuriosityStream Playback Experience
CuriosityStream’s playback interface is quite smooth and doesn’t lag even once.
In fact even while playing videos at the highest quality I did not notice any delay or any buffering.
The player has all that’s needed to easily control the video playback, there’s a play/pause button at the bottom along with a subtitle option as well as a settings option to change the video resolution and playback speed.
While switching between different language audio files there was no buffer time and the transition was smooth.
I also noticed that the quality of the 4K content is pretty darn decent and while I do use 4K on Prime and Disney+, the quality of the documentaries on CuriosityStream remain unmatched.
The playback experience extends across devices and I really loved the flawless and fluid UI on my iPhone.
One thing I did notice is that unlike some other streaming platforms that do not allow more than one user to watch the same program on different devices, CuriosityStream lets you and I did not find any flaw while trying to watch content on both my iPhone and laptop.
What are the Features of Curiosity Stream?
Curiosity Stream has a couple of features that are included in every subscription plan.
Parental Controls As a parent I was able to enable Kids mode on Curiosity Stream and filter content that’s age appropriate for my children. Modifying the settings on one device will sync across all devices that have Curiosity Stream installed on them. I could use Kids mode to filter content such as disturbing images, sexual content and even explicit documentaries and episodes.
Simultaneous Screening The subscription also gave me the ability to watch Curiosity Stream across multiple devices at the same time. This means that members of my family can login and watch different Curiosity Stream shows using my single login.
Ad Free Experience Curiosity Stream provides an ad free experience and only plays a single short sponsored ad before a video can start. There were no ads played during the series or documentary I was watching.
Pros and Cons of using CuriosityStream
|Thousands of titles||Limited language options|
|Impressive exclusive originals||Narrow focus|
|Offers apps for most major streaming platforms|
|Entries are either in HD or 4K quality|
CuriosityStream – Is it Worth It?
While there could have been a wider selection of documentaries and shows, I feel that CuriosityStream is not meant for everyone and only those who are looking for engaging content or to learn new things will love using this platform.
In my opinion, even though other online streaming platforms have documentaries and docu-series, you will not find any other platform to have the same amount of unique and original documentary content as CuriosityStream.
So, to summarize my experience and review – Definitely go for it, but choose the basic package to experience what CuriosityStream has to offer and then if you’re satisfied with what’s there, go for the top tier package and get access to some pretty amazing content and features.