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Ziggo GO (NL)

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If you live in the Netherlands, I am willing to put money on the fact that you already know what Ziggo is. As the largest cable operator in the country, you would be hard pressed to have never heard of Ziggo before. In fact, you probably grew up watching entertainment that was brought to you, courtesy of Ziggo. Today, though, Holland’s largest cable operator is now also one of the best TV streaming services on the web as well.

Of course, Ziggo’s breadth of services reaches far beyond that of just cable television and streaming. In addition to providing digital cable and an excellent streaming service, Ziggo is known for its internet and telephone services as well. In fact, if you are from the Netherlands, there is a good chance, I’m sure, that you may even be sick of Ziggo by now. That being said, before you swear off all things Ziggo for good, you should do yourself a favor and check out their TV streaming site. Trust me, I do not think that you will regret it.

Not only is Ziggo one of the largest on-demand TV streaming sites that I have ever seen, but it is also quite possibly the neatest and most user friendly. Believe it or not, it is not every day that I come across a TV streaming site that offers an elegant and well-organized way to browse such vast catalogs of TV series and movies. Ziggo is, by far, one of the best TV streaming sites that I have ever seen (and I have been reviewing streaming services for quite some time now).

Just because I love Ziggo, though, that does not necessarily mean that it will be the best TV streaming site for you. We all have our own preferences and taste, after all. There is no such thing as the best TV streaming site in the world; there is only the best site for you. So, then, is Ziggo the best streaming site for you? Well, there is only one way to find out for sure, isn’t there? And that is to take a closer look at the site itself, everything it has to offer, and whether it is worth its asking price.

So, without further ado, let’s take an in-depth, comprehensive look at one of the most popular streaming sites in all of Europe. Let’s put the TV streaming service Ziggo Go to the test today, shall we?

History

Ziggo first began as a cable company as the result of a merger. So, unlike many other enterprises in tech, Ziggo never exactly had what they call “humble beginnings.” The merger was between Multikabel, @Home, and Casema. Born of these 3 major entertainment companies, Ziggo was first launched on 16 May of 2008. This resultant company then went on to merge with yet another company in 2015 (UPC Nederland). At that time, Ziggo was already the 2nd largest cable provider in the Netherlands. Upon this 2015 merger, the company retained the name Ziggo, and its main competitors today are KPN and Canal Digitaal.

Up until 2012, the majority of the capital that was generated by Ziggo was tied up in holding companies (namely of 2 private equity firms: Cinven and Warburg Pincus). It wasn’t until March 21st of 2012 that Ziggo was finally listed as a publicly traded corporation. It was listed on the NYSE Euronext stock exchange at first. Later, Ziggo became incorporated in the AMX index. Interested parties can buy and sell stock in Ziggo, but shareholders can also trade options on Ziggo share.

In March of 2013, Liberty Global acquired 12.65% of Ziggo. This percentage increased to 15% in April and 28.5% in July, steadily increasing their ownership until they went in for the kill … On January 14, 2014, Liberty Global announced that it would be acquiring all of the remaining shares of Ziggo for a whopping € 10 billion. In November of the same year, upon European Union investigations, Liberty Global became the sole owner of Ziggo.

For many years thereafter, Ziggo has been known as one of the top cable, internet, and phone service providers in the Netherlands. By far, though, one of their most beloved products has been their on-demand TV streaming service, Ziggo Go. The service was initially introduced by UPC in 2012. Back then, it was called Horizon Go. It was not until November 9 of 2016, however, that the service underwent a rebrand and became known as Ziggo Go.

Ever since HBO 1, 2, and 3 went off the air in the Netherlands (on December 31st, 2016), Ziggo Go has been the number one way for Dutch people to enjoy all of their favorite HBO original content. But it is not just HBO shows that have caused Ziggo Go to become one of the most popular TV streaming sites in Holland. This site has proven itself, time and time again, to concern itself with nothing but quality and convenience. Let’s look a little more closely at the site and I will show you exactly what I mean.

Design

Ziggo Go has an incredible site design. In fact, I may even go as far as to say that it has the best design from any on-demand and live TV streaming site that I have seen thus far. I don’t mean to be hyperbolic, but, honestly, this site is right up my alley. It is perfectly organized, dynamic, user-friendly, intuitive, smooth, and responsive. It has just about everything that I look for, design wise, in a TV streaming site.

Not only is the site design practical, but it is also novel for a site of this type. Almost every TV streaming site that I review opts to employ the same old, expected layout. The overwhelming majority of these sites do little more than try their best to emulate Netflix. Ziggo Go, on the other hand, has managed to think outside the box (which I always appreciate), and it does not come at the expense of intuitiveness or user experience. On the contrary, I would say that Ziggo Go is even more user friendly than Netflix.

Essentially, what makes Ziggo Go so well-designed and so unique is the fact that it takes advantage of a solid site menu that is firmly rooted and spanning the left margin of the page. This is your portal to the whole of the site. It makes it so easy to browse content by type; it also provides a convenient and easily accessible route to your settings and watch list. Simply click on Home, TV & Replay, Movies & Series, Saved, or Settings. From there, watch the rest of the page transform around your selection. This is the definition of intuitive browsing. I wish that every premium TV and movie streaming site had a strong and clearly defined organizational structure like this. Instead, most sites leave me scrolling eternally through a grab bag of movies and series. Ziggo Go has clearly defined distinctions, and I like that.

Content and Features

This is another area in which Ziggo Go really shines as a TV streaming site. The quality of the content here is unparalleled – not just in the context of other TV streaming sites from the Netherlands, but in terms of other streaming services around the world. In fact, I would go as far as to say that Ziggo Go has, at least as of the time of this review, arguably a better content library than even Hulu!

This is partly due to their access to all HBO content (no real need for HBO Max if you have Ziggo), but that is not the only reason. Ziggo Go enables you to watch the best in Dutch cable TV – including your favorite regional series, international shows, and world class news programs (both local and international networks are available, such as CNN).

Ziggo Go members can choose whether they watch content on-demand or live, rounding out this TV streaming site’s offerings. Another feature that you will be able to look forward to is Ziggo Go’s “save” function, which allows you to easily save a TV episode or movie to a watch list. When you return to Ziggo Go, there it is, ready to stream.

Mobile and Desktop Experience

It is not just the desktop site that makes Ziggo Go one of the best TV streaming sites on the web. Its array of apps, too, enable you to watch your favorite shows no matter where you are. With equally intuitive and smooth apps for iOS, Android, ChromeCast, and Apple TV, cross-platform availability will be of no concern.

Likes & Hates:
Amazing site and app design
Tons of high-quality TV shows and movies
On-demand or live TV
Cross-platform availability
Pricey compared to other streaming services
Requires traditional cable account