What Is Playster?
Playster is an all-in-one streaming platform that promises unlimited entertainment. A subscription gives users unlimited access to books, audio books, music, movies and games for one flat monthly fee. Content can be streamed online on any smartphone, tablet or computer and can also be consumed offline. You can access Playster through their website, Android app or iOS app.
They seem to be differentiating themselves from the competition by promising to deliver every single type of entertainment in one place. And also by being the only service to still provide unlimited streaming of books and audio books, unlike giants Audible and Scribd, which have moved to a pay-per-use method.
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Playster – Unlimited Music, Books, Games & Movies
How Much Does Playster Cost?
Playster offers a number of different subscription options based on which media types you are most interested in. A book/audio book subscription, for example, costs $9.95 a month and, unlike competitors Audible and Scribd, Playster offers users unlimited streaming of their full catalog.
A comprehensive subscription, which offers the best value for money, gives members access to unlimited books, audio books, music, movies and games for $24.95 per month. Everything is accessible from any device with Internet access, but can also be accessed offline, if you save content to your library beforehand.
Playster offers a free 30-day trial, so that new users can choose the plan that’s right for them without having to commit upfront. If you like all the features and are comfortable signing up for 12 months, you will also receive a really nice perk: A free Android tablet and HD headphones shipped to your door as soon as you register.
What Content Does Playster Have?
If you love reading, you’ll be happy to see the variety of genres that Playster offers. From New York Times Bestsellers to books that inspired Oscar-nominated movies to romance, business, young adult and classic titles — there’s a lot to choose from. Some of the most popular books include: the Game of Thrones series, I Am Malala, Red Queen, Still Alice, Gone Girl and the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy.
Not all of these titles are available as eBooks, but they are all there in audio book form. The audio book catalogue is extensive and seems to include most of today’s biggest releases from publishers like Harper Collins and Harlequin. If you’re a Star Wars fan, you’ll find over 160 books and audio books about all things Star Wars. If you want to learn a language, they have that, too. There’s definitely an impressive amount of diversity!
With Playster’s latest app update, the service added major label artists and albums to its collection. There are a lot of reviews online addressing the service’s limited music library, but these seem to be outdated. Browsing through the genres and playlists reveals stuff from chart-toppers like Justin Timberlake, Coldplay, Pink Floyd, Skrillex, Johnny Cash and more.
Sorry to say you won’t find Hollywood’s biggest blockbusters on Playster. Although there are a number of good comedy, adventure and drama movies available, they’re either classics or were released several years ago. Playster appears to have put a focus on documentaries, which include some interesting titles, like the super popular The Secret. Looking at their CEO Philip Keezer’s blog, he seems to be a fan of docs himself and recently highlighted some that a lot of people would likely enjoy.
Although Android players will be rewarded with a larger selection than iOS users, there is a nice choice of addictive puzzle games and arcade classics for both. If you’re a hardcore gamer, you won’t get much out of this section, but if you enjoy passing the time with a fun game on your commute or on a lazy Sunday afternoon, then Playster has what you need. That includes card games, like Mahjong and blackjack, as well as arcade throwbacks, like Duke Nukem 3D and Flappy Bird. It’s a nice perk to the comprehensive subscription.
What Is The Playster Experience Like?
There are some issues with the search function that need to be fixed. Searching by title instead of, for example, author gives much better results and recommendations. If you’re OK with that, then you won’t mind.
If you want to discover new things based on your likes and preferences, Playster lets you do that in two ways. You can select the mood you’re in from a long list of options and you’ll be presented with various playlists that match that mood. You can also look in your customized suggestions tab. Any content that shows up there is based on things you’ve already read, watched, listened to or played.
If you would like to share your account with friends and family, you can do that as well. Every login allows users to set up three separate user profiles, which can be accessed simultaneously. That means that if you and a friend are sharing an account, your preferences and recommendations will remain separate and won’t ever get mixed up.
Whether you’re using the service through its app on a tablet or smartphone, or browsing it online, switching between mediums is super easy. In the app, you just have to go to the homepage and pick what you want: Music, movies, books or games.
Whenever you find something you like, you can press the ‘download’ button and that will make sure the song/book/playlist is saved to your phone or tablet. That way, next time you’re commuting and don’t have access to wi-fi, you can still listen to or read it without any trouble. Once you start listening to music or an audio book, you can continue to browse the app/site to discover even more content, without having to pause what you’re enjoying.
If you like a whole bunch of different songs from different artists, or want to save all your Must-Read books in one place, you can make as many of your own playlists as you like.
This is super simple: Pressing the three dots next to any title lets you save it to an existing playlist or start a new one with it. Once you’re done building the perfect playlist, you can even share it with friends by copy/pasting the link to whoever you like.
Another neat feature is the +Follow button. This appears next to the names of authors, singers, actors and more. By pressing it, you let Playster know that you want to be kept up to date and receive information on all new releases from this particular person, so you never miss anything. Right now, it looks like a lot of the info (photos and bios) about smaller celebrities is missing, but a lot of the bigger ones have complete profiles, so this must be a work in progress.
What’s In The Playster Combo Box?
The Playster Combo Box includes a 7-inch Android tablet and headphones and is free for anyone who signs up for 12 months of all-inclusive service. You won’t be charged up-front. You pay $24.95 per month like you would otherwise, except you have to agree to a 12-month contract.
The box is sent directly to you as soon as you start the subscription, so that you can take advantage of Playster on their own custom tablet. You can choose between black and white (although the website says the white Combo Box is currently out of stock) and only have to pay the $9.95 shipping and handling fee to get it. Once your 12-month contract is done, you can keep the tablet and headphones, whether you renew your subscription or not.
The site says the tablet has 8GB of storage (as well as a micro SD slot), wi-fi and Bluetooth capabilities and a dual camera. It’s just like any regular tablet and you can use it to browse the web and can download other apps, too, so it’s not limited to just Playster use. Seems like a good deal if you don’t have a tablet or are looking to get a second one.
What Is Playster Customer Service Like?
There are some complaints online mentioning a surprise $1 charge people noticed on their credit cards after signing up. Calling customer service to ask about it reveals the reason behind this: It’s an authentication charge, which isn’t actually charged to your credit card. It disappears after a couple of days and is only used to make sure that the credit card isn’t fraudulent.
The customer service rep was super friendly and took the time to explain the answer several times when she was asked to clarify. The response time was quick and the experience was pleasant. As it turns out, the authentication charge is standard practice for many subscription services.
So, Is It Worth It?
Overall, despite some small glitches here and there, if you’re a fan of subscription streaming services, Playster is worth a try. As mentioned above, you can get it free for 30 days and see if you and your family like it more than what you already have. Just be sure to call customer service to cancel if you decide it’s not right for you, otherwise you will be charged after your trial ends. 🙂