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Which streaming platforms are the most family-friendly — and why?

Streaming platforms are everywhere. What used to be something that cable cutters fantasized about is now one of the hottest tech trends. Almost every known network has jumped into the streaming game, and we’ve recently seen platforms offered from the Discovery Channel to Disney+. And since Netflix is now so familiar that it’s a household name, it can be hard to track what your family is watching.

Most popular networks are aware of the dangers of restriction-free streaming for children, so many offer various types of parental controls. But how do you keep up when there is a new streaming subscription every day to keep an eye on? We’ve found the family-friendly Netflix content and best kids streaming shows and compiled them here for you, just like you’ve wished someone would do.

Netflix

Netflix is loved by subscribers of all ages due to its extensive collection of movies and TV shows, both original and adopted from other networks. Some Netflix originals are both family-friendly and wildly popular, like Stranger Things and Riverdale. Netflix subscriptions start at $9 a month and go up to $18 a month. Kids love Netflix because it has tons of popular kid-friendly titles that educate and entertain.

Netflix offers customizable parental controls and profiles for everyone in your family. Each individual profile is customizable with different parental control settings, too. Unfortunately, Netflix’s Disney catalog is minimal, and in general, there are no warning cards or advisory details at the beginning of shows on Netflix.

Netflix

Disney+

Disney+ entered the streaming game intending to take over the family-friendly demographic. This network has TV shows and movies produced by every company associated with Disney, from Marvel to Pixar, and includes titles from the Star Wars franchise, including The Mandalorian. Disney+ costs $7 a month, or you can bundle it with Hulu and ESPN+ for $13 a month.

Many parents love Disney+ because it has content that is nostalgic for them, such as Boy Meets World, plus fresh new content geared toward parents. Parents also love the endless amounts of kid-friendly content, especially considering nothing on the platform rates higher than PG-13.

Though Disney+ offers parental controls, there is no password that protects the settings, so kids can figure it out and work around it pretty easily. Parents with kids of different age groups may also find the parental controls too rudimentary for multiple levels of restrictions.

Disney+

Sling

Sling is one of the only streaming services that have Nickelodeon and Disney channels live. The platform also has excellent parental controls that utilize a PIN system much like Netflix’s. As the PIN holder, you can lock or unlock specific ratings, and only users with the PIN can access the locked content. The amount of children’s content available on Sling is impressive, but all of the offerings may not be available in your specific area, so be sure to check that out before signing up.

Sling

Hulu

Hulu and Hulu Plus are favorite platform choices for large families or families with children in several different age groups. Since Hulu offers such a wide variety of content, there really is something for everyone in your house. You can create a kid’s profile, which is handy for keeping little kids out of older kid’s content and channels. Hulu also offers an on-demand service that features movies like Madagascar 2, classic cartoons such as Rugrats, and educational content like Sesame Street

Hulu and Hulu Live offer a wide range of channels for kids of all ages and allow you to create a kid’s profile. You can watch live TV, on-demand content, and tons of movies, depending on the plan you choose. 

Both Hulu and Hulu Live are on the pricey side when it comes to streaming services. Besides the already costly plan choices, you have to pay an extra $10 a month if you want 200 hours of DVR storage rather than the 50 hours the plans come with.

Hulu

As you can see, there are a bunch of options when it comes to family-friendly streaming platforms. If you’re looking for some new content, one of these platforms will surely keep you and your kids entertained no matter what age groups you are dealing with. If you’re trying to decide on just one, the decision ultimately comes down to what content your family wants and how many supervision options you want.

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Kelly Kaliszewski
Kelly's work has appeared in blogs and on websites. When she's not writing, she is playing with her two dogs, cooking, or…
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