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Streaming Video Services Offering Audio Description

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Video Streaming"Streaming video" (or VOD, Video On Demand) refers to video (like a movie) which is delivered to an end-user upon request (demand) over the Internet in a continuous transmission or stream.  Typically, the video is viewed in real time, but it may also be capable of being downloaded for later viewing.  When a subscription fee is charged (like Netflix), this delivery mechanisim is called SVOD, Subscription Video On Demand.  If you make the purchases one at a time (like iTunes), it is called TVOD, Transactional Video On Demand.  These methods of delivery are different from over-the-air, cable, or satellite television, or a video on disc.  (On this website, you may learn about those alternative methods of delivery on our Television or DVDs web pages.)  LAST UPDATE:  January 30, 2017.

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Streaming Video

Service Description of Offering Examples

The following services include SOME audio described programming.

Netflix logo

The dominant* provider of streaming video with audio description is Netflix, a subscription service available in 190 countries (about $10/month in the USA for unlimited viewing using web browsers, tablets, and handheld computing devices).  They offer over 280 audio described TV series, documentaries, original programming, and children's shows in the USA (over 400 individual offerings total).  Once a member, you can find a link labeled "Audio Description" at the bottom of the main page when viewed via a web browser, or in a menu on other devices, or you can see our alphabetized list of Audio Described Programs on Netflix anytime.  See our page Audio Description via Netflix for more information.  (As of October 2016, Netflix reportedly had 86 million subscribers with over 50 million within the United States.)

Criminal Minds (TV Series), House of Cards (Original Programming), Lee Daniel's The Butler (Movie), Making a Murderer (Documentary)
iTunes logo

Apple's iTunes offers over 500 movies with audio description tracks for rent (streaming) or purchase (downloading).  They are designated with the icon AD after the movie title in the description.  To find audio described content on iTunes, open iTunes, go to Store, select Movies (Ctrl-2 on a PC, Command-2 on a Mac), and click "Movies with Audio Descriptions" in the Movies Quick Links, which is on the side in a PC or Mac browser, or the bottom on an iPad.  If you have a Safari browser, you can click this iTunes AD link.  You may also check individual movies of interest, or see our alphabetized list of Audio Described Movies on iTunes.  Also see:  How to Rent a Movie from iTunes.

American Sniper, Bridge of Spies, Captain America: Civil War, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, The Angry Birds Movie, The Martian, The Revenant, Zootopia
Tell Me TV  Tell Me TV (formally Zagga) is a new start-up service billing itself as "the world’s first fully described video on-demand subscription service providing quality movies, documentaries and television to the vision-loss community via the web, mobile devices, smart TVs and other platforms."  They are currently offering "classic movies and TV programs, educational programs, documentaries, public TV, National Film Board productions and more".  There are future plans actively in the works for new content.  There is a 30-day free trial with a $7/month membership; but if you listen to an interview with founder Kevin Shaw from CoolBlindTech, you might get a longer trial!  (The TEDx Talk by founder Kevin Shaw is also worth listening to.) The Wizard of Oz, Pygmalion, Gulliver's Travels, America: The Story of Us
Vimeo  Vimeo is a free streaming service where users upload their own videos.  A very small number of the uploaded videos contain audio description and are generally so-designated in their titles. Our link takes you to the list of titles matching "audio description" or "audio described," as both terms are used, but many of them are demos, movie trailers, or discussions of audio description.  Driving Blind (movie),  Movie Trailers, Short Films
Disney Movies Anywhere Logo  The free Disney Movies Anywhere iOS App offers audio description tracks for select movies released by Disney companies (Disney, Pixar, Marvel, etc., including Star Wars videos).  This is different from other apps listed here in that it listens for the movie soundtrack and syncs itself to just add the description to the movie playing on a separate device (phone, tablet, TV, or even theater screen).  You can even listen privately with earphones.  You do not need to purchase the movie from Disney.  While the app itself is available on iOS, Android, and some Amazon and Microsoft devices, description is supported only on iOS devices at this time (verify current status).  Technically this is not a streaming video app, but it will often be used in conjunction with one.  (Reportedly, in some movies the track may sync 1/2 to 1 second too late.)
• Read the Disney Press Release.
• Read more details on the Disney App (from Lighthouse).
• Read about the audio description functionality of the Disney Movies Anywhere iOS App (from Disney).
• Read a review of the Disney app plus instructions on how to use it (from WonderBaby.org).
• Listen to a podcast reviewing the use of the Disney app (from Thomas Domville at Applevis; 20 mins).
The Good Dinosaur, WALL-E, Monster's University, Brave, Toy Story 1, 2, & 3, Cars 1 & 2, Up, Finding Nemo, Finding Dory, A Bug's Life, Ratatouille, The Incredibles, Zootopia
Watch ABC logo

The Watch ABC App offers access to live content and select previous episodes from mobile devices in select markets for free.  Generally (but not always), if an ABC show offers audio description, the show will be described using the appNOTE:  To activate description, you must do so via your device settings, not the app itself.  For example (with iOS devices):  Settings, General, Accessibility, Audio Descriptions, On.

black-ish, Fresh Off the Boat, Modern Family, The Middle
Pornhub The Pornhub website provides a subset of their "adult" videos in a category named "Described Video." Further information is available in this article in the SFO Guardian. n/a

Other TV Network Streaming Services, NONE of which offer description as far as we know.
They are included here so that you can urge them to do so!

CBS All Access Logo The CBS All Access App offers access to live content (in select markets) and over 7500 previous episodes via streaming devices like Apple TV, Roku, and ChromeCast, plus iOS and Android devices.  There is a fee for service; however, they do not offer any audio described content at this time, replying to our inquiry that they would "forward your suggestions to the programmers/developers for further review and future feature consideration." None
Fox Now Logo The Fox Now App offers free access to Fox shows for iOS, Android, and other mobile devices; however, they do not offer any audio described content at this time.  (They replied to our February 2016 inquiry:  "it is not a feature we offer on online streaming at this time.") None 
NBC App Logo The NBC App offers free access to new and classic NBC shows on various devices, including iOS, Android, Amazon Fire, and Roku; however, they do not offer any audio described content at this time that we know about. None
PBS Anywhere Logo The new PBS Anywhere App is available for select platforms like WIndows 10 and iOS with a promise of more to come.  They offer "a rich and varied selection of countless videos."  However, as far as we know, they do not offer any audio described content at this time. None
DirecTV Now  DirecTV Now is a brand new service on November 30 at $35-$70/month which offers "your favorite live sports, on demand, premium channels, popular shows, and hit movies right to your tablet, smartphone or TV."  There is no word yet on audio description, so we need to say they do not offer any audio described content at this time that we know about. None 

Other Streaming Services, NONE of which offer description as far as we know.
Please contact them to urge them to do so!

Amazon logo

Among its many offerings, Amazon rents or sells videos, includes a subset of them free with its Prime service, and offers monthly subscriptions to non-Prime customers; however, it does not offer any audio described content at this time that we know about.  Amazon will not confirm AD plans, but we are very optimistic that Amazon will offer description in 2017.

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CinemaNow Logo CinemaNow offers movies and next day TV for purchase or rental on just about every device imaginable; however, it does not offer any audio described content at this time.  Their response to our request:  "I've reported your concern and hope to have this feature available in the near future." None
Crackle Crackle is a free video streaming service for movies, TV series, and some original programming via Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, Microsoft Xbox, Roku, and Sony PlayStation; however, it does not offer any audio described content at this time.  They said they "will pass along your suggestion."  As of late April 2016, Crackle is also available on Comcast's Xfinity TV via their On Demand Guide.  The good news here is that Crackle is owned by Sony, and Sony has produced a lot of described content. None
FandangoNow logo

FandangoNow (formerly M-Go) is a pay-as-you-go rent or purchase site for both movies currently in theaters and previously released, plus current or previous TV series.  It operates on a variety of devices; however, it does not offer any audio described content at this time.  As of September 2016 they were not able to confirm any plan to offer audio described content.

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Fullscreen  Fullscreen is a fairly new offering from AT&T.  At $6/month, they offer "more than 1,500 hours of ad-free premium scripted and unscripted original series, TV shows and films licensed from studio partners."  AT&T wireless customers get a year free and no data charges.  They do not offer any audio described content at this time that we know about.  (Another service called FreeVIEW is available via the DirecTV Now app, but it has minimal content.) None 
Hulu logo

Hulu and Hulu Plus are subscription streaming services similar to Netflix; however, they do not offer any audio described content at this time that we know about.  Arrow Sign a petition asking Hulu to add description!  We are optimistic that Hulu will offer description before the end of 2017 but have no evidence to back that up!  (Hulu is owned by Disney, Fox, and Comcast and reportedly had 12 million subscribers as of May 2016, most in the USA.)  Update  On November 6, 2016, Hulu responded to the petition (above) as follows:  "Thanks for getting in touch with us, and thanks for the suggestion. I definitely see how Audio Description could be beneficial. I don't have any information to share on if/when this may become a part of our service, but I'll pass your feedback on to the team here."  Frown

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Sling TV Logo  Sling TV, owned by Dish Network, is a $20/month streaming service which offers over 65 channels including CNN, ESPN, TNT, TBS, The Cartoon Network, and Blockbuster on Demand, and supports the usual cadre of devices like iOS and Roku.  Although some of the networks they support (like TNT and TBS) offer description, the App does not offer any audio described content at this time.  Their response to our February 2016 request:  "... we have processed a feedback on your behalf to request its development." None
Toon Googles Logo Toon Goggles is one of several** children's programs video streaming services, supporting iOS, Android, and Windows.  They do not offer any audio described content at this time.  As of September 2016, "it is in the roadmap."  (** Other similar services include Curious World, Kidobi, and Play Kids.) None
Vudu Logo Vudu offers movies for streaming rental or sale on a variety of devices; however, it does not offer any audio described content at this time that we know about.  They have passed our February 2016 inquiry along for future consideration. None 
You Tube Red logo

You Tube Red is a brand new subscription streaming service; however, it does not offer any audio described content at this time.  They responded to our inquiry in February 2016 by saying they would pass the request along to their product team.

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OTHER
SERVICES

There are many other streaming video services that we don't know anything about, but we don't have any reason to believe any of them offer audio described content.  If you find any, please let us know!

Crunchyroll, Funimation (the two previous sites are working together), Google Play, HBO Go, HBO Now, PlayStation Video, PlayStation Vue, Showtime Anywhere, Xbox Video

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* Several late-2015/early-2016 studies have shown that the dominent player in the fee streaming video market is Netflix by very large margin over its nearest competitors:  Hulu, Amazon, and iTunes.  The nearest competitors to them appear to be HBO and Crackle (a free service).  (These statistics do not include the free videos on regular YouTube, a very highly used service.)  As of the start of 2017, iTunes actually has more described movies than Netflix has described videos (including individual series episodes), but iTunes only offers movies, while Netflix has a constant influx of new content (which will soon overtake iTunes), and it is all included for one fee, so we still consider Netflix "dominent."

If you learn that any service above has started offering described programming, please advise the webmaster!