Sony Crackle Review

8

Great

Price 9 out of 10

Interface 7.5 out of 10

Compatibility 9.2 out of 10

New Shows 8 out of 10

Sony Crackle is an ad-supported video on demand streaming platform. Known previously as just Crackle, this service is completely free and offers a range of TV and movies. It can be used on many streaming platforms and devices. This service doesn’t offer native support for Nvidia Shield or similar Android TV devices. Although Sony Crackle is free, you can make an account and log in so the platform can keep track of your watch history.

The platform came about due to a joint venture between Sony Pictures Television and Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment. There is a decent range of original content available, plus programming which has been acquired from other companies.

Sony Crackle Is available in 21 countries across the globe, and it may be known by those who were with it from the start as Grouper. However, it was renamed to Crackle when Sony purchased it in 2006.

The service is owned by Crackle Plus, with this venture also owning VOD platforms Popcornflix, Truly and Pivotshare. The programming typically found on Crackle includes action, drama, crime, comedy, horror and sci-fi.

Its content partners include Alliance Films, Lions Gate Entertainment, Miramax, Paramount Pictures, Red Bull, Screen Media Ventures, StudioCanal, The Walt Disney Company, Universal Studios, Village Roadshow Entertainment Group and Warner Bros/New Line Cinema.

Pros and Cons

Pros

It’s free. There is nobody in the world who will say no to something which is free, and so access to a free streaming service will not be rejected.

Decent selection of content. Although it is not on par with the standard seen with paid services like Netflix and Disney Plus, there is still plenty to choose from.

Sort by original content. Sony Crackle is one of the few free platforms which offers access to exclusive content. Big names like Ashton Kutcher and Bryan Cranston are linked with this streamer.

Cons

No HD quality available. Those who stream with 4K devices or at least want to stream in a resolution like 1080p will find it difficult to browse consistent options.

Small library. While the titles available are decent considering the service is free, those who are really picky may consider that the choice is meagre.

Technical issues. Users have complained in the past that there have been issues like glitches or excessive buffering when using the site to stream content.

Genres and channels

Sony Crackle is a good alternative to those who don’t want to pay full price for services such as Netflix, Hulu or HBO. If you’re on a budget, you can enjoy a selection of similar content without the monthly fee by watching adverts during breaks.

While Sony Crackle doesn’t offer exclusives or original content in the way that Netflix is able to, it has a library containing films which are free compared to Hulu and Amazon Prime Video, where you would need to be signed up to their streaming service. What’s more, they are entering the realm of original content by offering exclusive shows such as Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee. Due to the range of free content, many people use Sony Crackle as a supplement to their existing streaming services.

Top Sony Crackle shows and movies

Although the library of content with Sony Crackle is smaller than those of its competitors, there are still some top titles available:

Zombieland

This classic zombie movie sees a virus turn most people into the creatures. Those humans which survive are left in a never-ending battle against the undead. Four star survivors – played by Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin – fight their way to a safe haven in LA.

Fight Club

Edward Norton plays a depressed man with insomnia who meets Tyler Durden, a soap salesman played by Brad Pitt. After moving into his house following the destruction of his immaculate apartment, the pair form a club which has strict rules and begin a series of fights with other men who are bored with their lives.

Stranger Than Fiction

Will Ferrell plays an IRS auditor with mental health issues who finds out that he’s the unfortunate protagonist of an author’s latest novel. He embarks on a mission to make the author change her story while the book company employee attempts to aid with her case of writer’s block.

Layer Cake

A cocaine dealer based in London wants to step away from his criminal lifestyle. However, before he can do so, his supplier ropes him into a complex set of jobs whereby he must kidnap the daughter of a rival and facilitate the purchase of a huge supply of ecstasy pills from a dealer called ‘the Duke’.

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

Originally released in 2000, this fantasy drama film takes place in 19th century Qing Dynasty China. A warrior, played by Chow Yun-Fat, gives his sword to his lover, played by Michelle Yeoh. The plan is to deliver the item – named Green Destiny – to safe-keeping, but it gets stolen. During the search, they are taken to the House of Yu, where the story takes a dramatic turn.

Top TV shows on Sony Crackle

There are plenty of TV shows to choose from with Sony Crackle, including a growing selection of originals:

Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee

Comedian Jerry Seinfeld meets various celebrity friends for coffee, driving there in a classic car and sharing stories along the way. Viewers can enjoy the conversation in the car and at the table of the diner they end up going to. They can find out more about what comedians do during the day while they’re on tour, and Seinfeld always picks a car he thinks will best fit the guest.

Cleaners

This show has two seasons and features two attractive young women who are secretly highly trained contract killers. They’re running an errand for their boss, but it quickly goes wrong and they end up being targeted by the client – who just so happens to be the FBI. Furthermore, their boss is now after them, sending out a team of assassins to kill them.

Chosen

The plot of Chosen involves a divorced lawyer called Ian Mitchell who is father to young daughter Elle. He receives a box containing a gun and a photo of a stranger – plus instructions to kill the person in the picture. When he is attacked by another stranger, he finds out that he’s been chosen by an organisation called The Watchers to take part in a deadly game.

SuperMansion

This series is about a group of superheroes called the League of Freedom. They are led by Titanium Rex and have their base in the SuperMansion, located in Storm City. By the time season two rolls around, the Injustice Club is formed with the aim of taking on the League of Freedom.

The Ropes

Viewers explore the world of nightclub bouncing with this TV series. It follows a man called Martin, who is taken care of by Big Vic – the head bouncer of the club. However, another bouncer, Les, lures him into a dangerous underworld, and Martin has to navigate this complicated world, making tough decisions along the way.

Streaming library

The user interface with Sony Crackle is simple and easy to navigate. When clicking onto the homepage, users will find that the main categories to browse through are TV and movies. There is also a search bar for finding a specific title.

Along the top of the screen is a slider which highlights top picks available on the platform. If a title is exclusive to the service, this will be indicated with an orange label.

Underneath, there is a section called the Spotlight channel which provides access to titles that the platform recommends users should check out.

Other channels include the Comedy Channel, Automobiles, Trains and Planes Channel, Field of Streams, Old School Action Heroes Channel, Homeschool Channel and more.

Streaming quality

There is unfortunately not an option for users to consistently stream titles in 4K, which means their options will be limited to the maximum that Sony Crackle can offer. That said, users consistently report that they can stream to a good quality on their laptops, tablets and mobile devices.

The adverts found with Sony Crackle are not too intrusive; they tend to appear as often as would be found when watching traditional TV. For example, there may be a 30 second commercial before a title begins, and then 2 or 3 shorter ads during a TV show. If a movie is being watched, there may be up to nine ads included, but these will typically be spaced out so they don’t interrupt the viewing experience too much.

Customer support

As a first port of call, Sony Crackle users can navigate to the Help Center – which provides access to most of the commonly asked questions encountered by users. On top of a searchable database, content is broken down into categories such as About Crackle, Getting Started, Supported Devices, Manage Your Account and more. Trending and promoted articles are featured, but the direct support options are fairly scarce. To be precise, help requests can be submitted using a web form, but live chat or phone support is not available at the time of writing.

Free trial

There is no free trial included with Sony Crackle, as the service is free of charge. Those who want to sign up for an account can do so without any need to enter payment information. The only details they will need to part with in this circumstance are their email address and password.

Plans and pricing

Signing up with Sony Crackle is incredibly simple, as the service is completely free. While there are ads on each of the titles, there are no subscriber fees involved. Therefore, once you’re on the application, you can use it without entering any personal information or payment details. You can sign up for an account if you want to keep your place after pausing a particular TV show or movie, sync content across multiple devices or receive watching recommendations based on your viewing history, but it isn’t essential to do this.

Competitors

There are several competitors in the streaming platform industry, and you have probably heard of most of them – the big names include Netflix, Hayu, HBO Go, Crunchyroll, Kodi, Fubo TV and so on. The main point where Sony Crackle stands out against the crowd is the fact their services are completely free of charge, but this will come at the cost of a limited library and having ads to watch at regular intervals.

Is Sony Crackle worth it?

Sony Crackle is a good option for those who are on a budget or who want an additional streaming service to supplement their existing subscriptions. It’s easy to access the services as you don’t need an account to view the available titles, and there is popular original content on offer such as Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee. However, if you don’t want to watch ads or enjoy a high picture quality, it may be best to look elsewhere.

The platform itself is easy to use, which will be a big plus for those who switch between services available free of charge and don’t want to experience any confusion when looking for the movies they like. What’s more, Crackle stands out due to offering original content with top celebrities involved.

By avoiding a subscription plan or associated costs, platforms like Sony Crackle will attract viewers with ease. That said, many people will struggle with the regular ad breaks which come as the catch for not parting with any money to watch top TV shows and movies. Overall, for those on a budget, Sony Crackle is a no-brainer.

FAQ

How to cancel my Sony Crackle subscription

As Sony Crackle is a free streaming service, it is not necessary to cancel the service. However, if you wish to deactivate your account, you can do so by navigating to the Profile/Account page under your name on the desktop application. Then select the Deactivate option in the personal information section.

How to login to my Sony Crackle account

  1. Navigate to the Sony Crackle website.
  2. Click on the Sign In button located in the top right hand corner of the web page.
  3. Enter your email address.
  4. Enter your password.
  5. Click on Sign In.
  6. Start streaming!
How to delete my watch history on Sony Crackle

It is easy to remove titles which appear in your watch history. Click on the item in question, then click on the Delete option. Alternatively, choose the Clear button to empty the watch queue.

How to restart my Sony Crackle subscription later


As there is no subscription involved with Sony Crackle, users can sign into their accounts or watch without an account whenever they like. No costs are included as part of the user experience, so people who want to watch titles on the site can do so without needing to worry about cancelling a billing cycle or restoring any details by restarting a subscription in the future.

How to get a refund on Sony Crackle?

Sony Crackle does not offer refunds due to the nature of its service – namely, that it does not have any subscriptions to offer. Those who watch the service will not be worrying about gaining a refund.

Are there any good alternatives to Sony Crackle
?

There are a number of decent free TV streaming services out there, such as Tubi TV and Pluto TV. At first glance, these platforms provide a very similar service in that there is a decent library of ad supported content on offer. That said, Sony Crackle stands out for a few reasons. Firstly, as the platform is more well known, it naturally attracts more people. Secondly, the inclusion of original titles with top celebrities means it has a high reputation that entices people into using the streamer.

Can I use my Sony Crackle account in another country?

Sony Crackle is available for users who reside in the United States and its associated territories, completely free of charge. Those outside of this location may not typically be able to access the service, so US citizens who travel to another location will need to be aware that they may not be able to access their Sony Crackle account during this time.

How to sign up to Sony Crackle
  1. Navigate to the Sony Crackle website.
  2. Click on the Sign In button located in the top right hand corner of the site.
  3. Click on the Sign up for free button.
  4. Enter your first name.
  5. Enter your last name.
  6. Enter your email address.
  7. Enter your password.
  8. Enter your birthdate month.
  9. Enter your birthdate day.
  10. Enter your birthdate year.
  11. Enter your gender.
  12. Check the box if you want to be kept updated on the latest exclusive titles from Sony Crackle, plus the movies and TV shows which become available to stream on the platform.
  13. Click on Create Account.
  14. Start streaming!

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