Between the two streaming services, pretty much every device you can imagine is able to receive films and TV series.
But which one deserves your dosh? Is it time to anoint a new streaming king? Let's find out.
LoveFilm Instant vs Netflix: price
Both services are £5.99 per month and offer 30-day free trials. LoveFilm also offers DVD and Blu-Ray rental, which - if you want rentals as well as streaming - costs £9.99 to £13.27 per month depending on how many simultaneous disc rentals you want to have (the maximum is three).
LoveFilm Instant vs Netflix: devices
While both services support the big hitters - iOS, PlayStations and Xboxes, PCs and Macs - Netflix supports many more devices than LoveFilm.
Netflix streams to the PS3, PS4, Wii, Wii U, Xbox 360 and Xbox One, compatible LG, Panasonic, Philips, Samsung and Sony Blu-Ray players and Smart TVs, Apple TV and set-top boxes from Philips, Roku, WD and Virgin Media, LG home theatre kit, Android (including Kindle Fire and Chromecast), iPhone, iPad and Windows Phone.
By comparison LoveFilm's selection looks a little sparse. The Android app doesn't stream, and the support for other kinds of devices is less impressive than Netflix's: compatible TVs and Blu-ray players include Sony, Samsung and LG but not Panasonic or Philips, and the home cinema and set-top box support is limited to Sony kit. You do get apps for Kindle Fire, Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, Wii U, Xbox One and PS4, though.
It's worth pointing out the Microsoft tax on the Xbox apps: if you want to stream Netflix or LoveFilm content on an Xbox 360 or Xbox One, you'll need a gold Xbox Live subscription.
LoveFilm Instant vs Netflix: TV
Netflix's purchase of Breaking Bad was a smart move, and it's made some more: it's commissioned two new series so far, with Kevin Spacey chewing the scenery in the superb House of Cards and Taylor Schilling attracting rave reviews in Orange Is The New Black. Netflix has also saved Arrested Development from oblivion.
Netflix is particularly good for US TV programmes, although HBO titles such as Six Feet Under and The Sopranos are absent, and it has a useful kids mode that gives the kids Spongebob Squarepants instead of Walter White (you can also have multiple users, with Netflix asking you who you are when you login). Stand-up comedy is well represented too.
If you're looking for Breaking Bad on LoveFilm you'll need to be a DVD or Blu-Ray subscriber, but LoveFilm redeems itself with a pretty good collection of BBC programmes, especially children's programmes, and a great selection of cartoons.
Some big hitters are here too - you can stream Dexter, the first two seasons of The Walking Dead and Battlestar Galactica - but the TV selection is rather limited. All too often clicking on programmes in the web version took us to LoveFilm's DVD listings because the service didn't have the streaming rights.
LoveFilm Instant vs Netflix: movies
Both services have a good selection of children's films including Disney and Pixar classics, but when it comes to the grown-up stuff LoveFilm has more recent blockbusters.
However, "recent" is relative, as both firms generally have to wait until films have dropped out of the DVD/Blu-Ray charts before the studios make them available for streaming. A quick search for high-profile films demonstrates the differences: LoveFilm has Looper, Bridesmaids, Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 2, Rio and the recent Alice In Wonderland remake, and Netflix doesn't.