Paramount Plus UK review: is new streaming service on Sky worth subscribing to, and how much does it cost?

Paramount+ launched in the UK last month and currently offers a seven-day free trial for subscribers

Paramount+ is the new streaming service on the block, trying to find its niche alongside more established platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+ and Apple TV+.

Those with a Sky Cinema subscription can get Paramount+ for free, but for everyone there is a fee.

After the free trial, subscribers will either pay £6.99 a month, £69.90 for an annual subscription - or they will cancel their membership. Given the problems plaguing the platform and its blatant inferiority to other streaming services of a similar price, it is likely that many users will opt for the latter.

The paramount problem with Paramount+ is its library - the range of titles offered is extremely limited.

There are a handful of flagship shows available - 1883, Halo, The Offer, Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, The First Lady, and Mayor of Kingstown.

Of these, Halo and The Offer have been critically panned, and only the new Star Trek series seems to have generated much of a buzz.

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A retro poster for Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, depicting various cast members in front of the Enterprise (Credit: Paramount+)

The site has 398 films, which would have been a lot ten years ago but today is slim pickings - Disney Plus has 500, and Netflix has more than 4,000 (though granted plenty of those are not worth watching).

But on Paramount+, many of the titles listed as films are actually shoddy made for TV documentaries of less than an hour in length - McDonalds Vs Burger King, The World’s Most Luxurious Prison etc.

And of the titles that actually qualify as films many are notoriously rubbish - Cujo, Dinner for Schmucks, Grease 2, Biker Boyz - it’s almost as if the streaming site tried to make a platform inspired by the so-bad-it’s-good films that it offers.

Another annoying aspect of the site is shared by most streaming platforms - the library contains some incomplete film franchises. For instance, Scream 1-3 is available but Scream 4, which came out more than a decade ago, is not. Paranormal Activity 2-5 and 7 are on the site, but the first film (arguably the only good one) and the sixth are both missing. Transformers and Friday the 13th are among other incomplete franchises on the platform, both are missing the first film in the series.

The first instalment of horror franchise Friday the 13th is noticeably absent on Paramount+

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Aside from what Paramount+ does (or doesn’t) have in its library, another big problem with the platform is that it is frustratingly non-user friendly.

If you hover over a title it won’t show you any information about the title - there’s no plot synopsis, rating, or even how long the show or film is, which is a factor for many when choosing something to watch. To find out any information about a title, and to add it to your watchlist, you need to click on it, which means the show or film will start playing automatically and makes searching through the site for content to watch a laborious and off putting process.

Additionally, if you search for a film that isn’t available, which as discussed is highly likely to happen, it won’t bring up any alternatives of a similar genre or theme, it just pathetically apologises for being bereft of entertainment.

And you better check your spelling before searching too, because Paramount+ is not smart enough to correct you, any spelling error no matter how small will mean the title you’re looking for will not be found.

This is one of the streaming platforms that might actually be hurt by its offering of a free trial - one week is more than enough time to realise how user unfriendly the platform is and how sparse is its library.