What is Funimation? Funimation Review 2022
MAJOR UPDATE 3/1/22: Crunchyroll, Wakanim, VRV, and Funimation are merging into a single service under the Crunchyroll brand.
Funimation exclusives are now available to Crunchyroll subscribers and all new series will stream only on Crunchyroll. New series episodes of current shows will continue to premiere on Funimation. Current Funimation subscribers can get a 60 day free trial of Crunchyroll here.
Funimation is a company that has been providing English dubs of Japanese animation since 1994. They now offer an anime streaming service that provides a massive library of over 10,000 anime show episodes and movies. You can watch certain content for free with ads, or get a paid subscription to unlock everything ad-free. In this Funimation Review 2022, I will be breaking down if their streaming service is right for you.
One highlight of their service is an emphasis on dubbed anime, or anime with English voice acting dubbed over the original Japanese dialogue. They also release “SimulDubs” or dubbed anime episodes that are released within weeks of the original Japanese broadcast.
In addition to maintaining a big presence at events and anime conventions, Funimation sells anime DVDs, Blu-Rays, figurines, and other merchandise. Depending on your membership type, you can unlock free shipping, special offers, and other perks like an annual anniversary gift, too.
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What's on Funimation? Funimation Review 2022
The anime shows on Funimation range from fan favorites to niche underdogs. There's current season shows like Attack on Titan, Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, One Piece, Fruits Basket, How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom, and My Hero Academia that are released on a regular schedule.
Popular anime mainstays such as Cowboy Bebop, Bleach, Dragon Ball Z, Speedracer, Afro Samurai, Black Butler, and Mobile Suit Gundam are there as well. There's even some live-action shows and movies like I Am a Hero, Mulan: Rise of a Warrior, RoboGeisha and Street Fighter: Assassin's Fist.
As stated before, a specific emphasis with Funimation is on dubbed content, but there are still plenty of anime shows with subtitles. For most shows you can choose in the settings based on your personal preferences.
Funimation Plans & Costs
There are four tiers for Funimation memberships:
- Free– Yes, that's right. You can watch some of Funimation's content for free. You will have to sit through ads, though. Take note that much of the content on Funimation is blocked off to paying subscribers only and only certain versions of the app allow you to watch the free content.
- Premium– This membership is $5.99 per month or $59.99 per year. With it, you unlock the full library of content from Funimation, including the current season shows without advertising. This membership allows for two simultaneous streams per account.
- Premium Plus– $7.99 per month or $79.99 per year. Full access to the library ad-free. 5 simultaneous streams. Allows you to download content for offline viewing. Plus you get access to members-only events, early access to Funimation Shop sales, free shipping on orders over $20, and other members-only offers.
- Premium Plus Ultra- $99.99 per year. All the benefits of Premium Plus except ALL orders get free shipping from the Funimation Shop. You'll also receive an annual anniversary gift (the most recent was a Funimation scarf).
You can get a free, 14 day trial of a paid membership of your choosing at this link here.
Funimation vs Crunchyroll
EDIT: See 3/1/22 Update Above
For a long time, the anime streaming service that was the main competitor to Funimation was Crunchyroll. Things got interesting, though, when Funimation acquired Crunchyroll, a process that was completed in August 2021.
For now they exist as separate anime streaming services even if they aren't technically “rivals” any more.
I'll break down the differences of Funimation vs Crunchyroll here:
- Funimation is focused on dubbed anime. Crunchyroll is focused on subtitled anime. That isn't to say each offers a little of both, but if you prefer anime with English voice actors then Funimation is a safe bet.
- Funimation's plans start at $5.99/month while Crunchyroll's start at $7.99 per month. If you are really on a budget then Funimation will save you a couple bucks.
- The content library for Crunchyroll is slightly larger than Funimation, although both offer titles the other does not. To watch Dragon Ball Z or Hellsing (at least in the U.S.), for example, you will need to get Funimation. Crunchyroll, meanwhile, makes it's own original content like Shenmue: The Animation and Fena: Pirate Princess.
- Crunchyroll offers access to digital manga in English, Funimation does not. Funimation offers free shipping with some of their memberships while Crunchyroll does not.
One service isn't necessarily “better” than the other. It comes down to personal tastes. If you want to spend the least amount of money, focus on dubbed anime over subtitled anime, and get access to more anime mainstays like Dragon Ball Z and Cowboy Bebop, then Funimation is the way to go!
Funimation App Review
You can access Funimation on a variety of devices. Those include mobile devices with apps on iOS and Android; game consoles by Xbox, Playstation, and Nintendo; and streaming players and smart TVs by Amazon, Android, Google, Apple, Samsung, Sony, and Roku.
I found the navigation on the app to be a little clunky but still usable. Shows are broken down into different genres and collections which makes discovering new shows easier. There isn't an option for different “profiles” on the same account, but they do offer parental controls to limit TV-MA content.
4K and UHD isn't available, as anime in 4K is hard to come by in general (Crunchyroll doesn't offer this either). Videos can still max out in High Definition at 1080p, though. If you purchase anime on DVD or Blu-Ray with a digital code, you can redeem it through Funimation and watch movies you've puchased through the app.
Funimation Review 2022 Final Thoughts
The Funimation app is a great way to access a vast library of anime. While most streaming services offer some form of anime selection, the amount of content specific to fans of Japanese animation is something you won't see on Netflix or Paramount Plus. The SimulDubs are a great feature that give you access to the current shows the Internet is buzzing about.
The 14 day trial gives you a generous grace period to out try a Premium membership. Plus with plans starting at less than $6/month, Funimation offers a great value for the price.
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