Are Acorn TV and BritBox the same?

While Acorn TV and BritBox do have similarities, the two services are different and the choice between the two ultimately comes down to preference.

When it comes to the leading English paid subscription video-on-demand platforms which have become popular in countries outside of the United Kingdom, the top two competitors are Acorn TV and BritBox,  which has resulted in the frequent comparison of the two platforms.

While they do bear some similarities in terms of their pricing and overlapping offerings, as the years have gone by, the two platforms have created niche markets to attract subscribers differently.

Therefore, there are distinctions that set them apart from each other in terms of their program offerings, as one is touted for its classic offerings and the other for its push to introduce new and original content.

A universally popular opinion on Acorn TV vs BritBox

Before going into detail about the similarities and differences that define Acorn TV and BritBox as separate entities,  there is a universally shared question about this decision, which is, ‘why choose when you can experience both?’

Therefore, if you have the money, it is advisable that you  purchase both. However, if you do not, both services offer prospective subscribers a seven-day free-trial which is ideal to test out both platforms and they can choose their preference based on which one they enjoy most.

Are Acorn TV and BritBox the same?

Acorn TV and BritBox differ in many ways, ranging from the history and introduction of both platforms to their niche show offerings and ease of use.

The two are different in many ways. Currently, the only similarity that they share is the price points to stream either service in the US. It costs $6.99 per month or $69.99 for an annual subscription package on Acorn TV or BritBox.

The annual subscription is for those who want a long commitment, and they also get a discount of two months’ payments as the annual subscription is the equivalent of 10 monthly payments, so the two additional months are “free” with the annual subscription package.

Acorn TV and BritBox have worked in recent years to create distinct niche markets in the US to cater to the wants and needs of its subscribers.

As of 2020, the only shows that overlapped between the two platforms are Midsomer Murders and Midsomer Murders: 20th Anniversary Special and Thorne.

But in terms of their histories, the content they offer and both platforms’ ease of use, they are different, so the decision between the two will be based on the preferences of the individual and their ideal English content video-on-demand streaming service.

Acorn TV on Amazon Prime Video BritBox on Amazon Prime Video

Acorn TV vs BritBox: History

Acorn TV has been around longer than BritBox as it was established in 1994. It shared a similar trajectory with Netflix, and it was initially a distributor for British VHS content.

Later, the platform moved with the times to DVD Blu-ray, and subsequently developed its direct-to-consumer e-commerce website in 2011.

In 2013, Acorn TV was relaunched with monthly and annual subscription options. BritBox is the youngest between the two platforms as it was introduced in 2017.

However, even during its introduction, it was already positioned as a competitor in 2016 with over 250 000 subscribers already compared to the reported 430 000 subscribers that Acorn TV had in 2016. This was attributed to the fact that BBC Studios and ITV backed the platform.

Acorn TV vs BritBox: Programming

Both, Acorn TV and BritBox have used their programming to create niche markets for themselves. Acorn TV is highly touted for its push to bring the most current programming to its US market,  which is aided by its support from the AMC Network.

As such, some episodes that air are made available in the US the day afterward, technically hours afterward,.

BritBox, with its access to the extensive library by BBC Studios and ITV, has created a niche by offering classic television shows like Coronation Street, Doctor Who, and EastEnders.

Initially, Acorn TV led the charge in the making of original programming, but BritBox has all but caught up in recent years.

Acorn TV vs BritBox: Ease of use

In terms of ease of use, Acorn TV takes the cup. This is as shows can be downloaded directly as an app to your Amazon Fire TV, Roku, or can be added as a channel to your Android device.

But BritBox does require that the service in the US is added as an add-on to your Amazon Prime Video or Apple TV subscriptions, which are separate monthly or annual subscription costs on their own.

Compatible devices for each service includes:

Acorn TV Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, Android devices, Apple TV (the tvOS version), Chromecast, iOS devices, laptops/desktops, Roku, and Samsung Smart TVs
BritBox Android devices, Apple TV 4K (4th Generation or Airplay to older models), Chromecast, iOS devices and smartphones, laptops/desktops, Roku, and Samsung Smart TVs
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