If you’re a novice looking to get into anime, you’re better off using a service you probably already have, like Hulu, Prime, or Netflix. They have SOME anime. But if you’ve been watching anime, then VRV might be better since it offers several platforms in one for a single cost. However, the best way for avid anime fans to get their anime fix is with Crunchyroll, and here’s everything you need to know.
It’s been a minute since Sony bought Crunchyroll (from AT&T) and absorbed their own competing service (Funimation) under the Crunchyroll banner to become the de facto home for anime. For those looking to watch major anime titles, Crunchyroll is the leading streaming platform. Beyond its extensive anime catalog, it also offers access to a large manga library, games, and drama.
This article one Crunchyroll by CordCutting.com goes into way more detail, but the essentials are below.
There’s a free tier, but to really take advantage of everything Crunchyroll has to offer, you’ll want to pay for a Premium membership.
Free vs Premium Users
A free Crunchyroll user can expect to watch numerous ads per episode. When not paused by ads, free users also have to wait for a week before getting access to the latest anime and dramas. If you’re a free user, however, you won’t be able to access any of the digital manga.
For all Premium members, a major advantage is access to Crunchyroll’s extensive online manga library. Across all of Crunchyroll’s Premium tiers, there are no ads. Crunchyroll Premium members can watch shows the same day they air in Japan. In fact, new episodes can be accessed as little as one hour after the Japanese premiere. Crunchyroll helps keep this neatly organized via its simulcast calendar. So whether you’re using Crunchyroll’s website or browsing manga via Crunchyroll’s manga app for Android or iOS, there are flexible options for viewing.
Differences in paid tiers (Fan, Mega, Ultimate)
Fan members can stream on only one device at a time. Meanwhile, the Mega Fan tier allows for streaming on four devices, and Ultimate fans can stream on up to six devices. So, if you’re looking to share a membership, the latter tiers can be sized to your household and device usage.
If you want to watch anime on the go, especially in places where streaming isn’t ideal, Crunchyroll also has the option to download episodes for offline viewing for either Mega or Ultimate Fans. If you’re using the Crunchyroll app, it’s easy to build a watch list and begin stockpiling episodes as needed for a trip.
The Little Extras.
Every three months Mega Fans receive $15 off a $100 purchase in the Crunchyroll Store, and Ultimate Fans will receive $25 off. Ultimate Fans also receive access to an annual swag bag and a limited run of the Crunchyroll mascot figure. Ultimate Fan subscribers also get access to a free snack pack and Right Stuff anime coupon.
With no real options to watch anime on network or cable TV, Crunchyroll is the best choice for streaming anime. Other streaming providers may offer anime, but a lack of new releases means you can’t stay current. The large library of titles, access to new releases an hour after debuting in Japan, and an affordable premium subscription tier make Crunchyroll the best place to watch anime. The large library of titles, access to new releases an hour after debuting in Japan, and an affordable premium subscription tier make Crunchyroll the best place to watch anime.