They’ve all arrived and now you have to decide which is the best one(s) for you – and no, Quickflix doesn’t count.
Who do you spend your hard earneds with? Which is the service that’s gonna suit you best? It’s not an easy call, as there’s some overlap across all three and unique offerings that will have you wanting each service depending on your mood.
Remember all three services offer a free 30 day trial that allow you to test them out and cancel before those days end and you’ve used them at no charge, but remember the devil is in the download detail… Unless you’re with an ISP that offers the service unmetered (i.e. it doesn’t count toward your monthly download allowance) then it’s smooth sailing otherwise next month’s Internet bill might come with a sizeable sting in the tail*.
So laid bare here are the basics of the three services, what they offer and how they compare. It’s not as simple as an apples to apples comparison as there’s even slight variances in the pricing offerings. So pay attention and pick your poison (at least one of them is likely to catch your fancy).
A joint venture between Foxtel and Seven West Media.
Launch: 18 Jan 2015 (TV); 13/03/2014 (Movies).
Cost/mth: $9.99 TV OR Movies; $14.99 both.
Platforms: Chromecast, PC or Mac Desktop/Laptop, iOS tablet/phone, limited Android tablet/phone.
Unmetered ISPs: Foxtel, Telstra.
Number of devices: 2 simultaneous; up to 4 registered; All SD/HD.
Marquee content: Ray Donovan, Wentworth, Homeland, Veep, The Wire.
Other agreements: HBO, Showtime, 20th Century Fox, Foxtel, ABC Australia.
Kids content: Yes.
Should I get it?: If it’s on Foxtel it’ll likely filter into this service given they’ll be hungry to secure the second run digital rights for all programs now. Their agreements are good and will be the best place to get HBO content in Australia without a Foxtel account (until HBO Now launches in the US and people start signing up to that too). The higher entry point for TV plus Movies isn’t great when compared to the other services however their library and backing is super strong. If you wanted Foxtel content without the Foxtel account this is a great offering sure to entertain all ages. If you’ve got Foxtel already then there’s no need for this additionally, depending on your package.
Yes/No: Yes with an if, No with a but.
A joint venture between Nine Entertainment Co and Fairfax Media.
Launch: 26 Jan 2015.
Platforms: Chromecast, Airplay via Apple TV, PC or Mac Desktop/Laptop (will not work with Chrome on Mac), iOS tablet/phone, limited Android tablet/phone.
Unmetered ISPs: None at publication (deal in the works with Telstra).
Number of devices: 3 simultaneous; up to 6 registered; All SD/HD.
Marquee content: Better Call Saul, Dig, Transparent, Community, Wolf Creek TV series, Breaking Bad, Fargo, Masters of Sex.
Other agreements: Roadshow Entertainment, BBC Worldwide, Nine Network, SBS World Movies, ABC Australia.
Kids content: Yes.
Should I get it?: They’ve already announced they’ve commissioned two Australian series for the platform AND are continually dropping movies and TV series in full to consume. The parent company has invested a lot in content to make this a valid option (and a very Netflixy interface to boot) so it’s a no brainer to sign up and browse through the catalogue to see what catches your fancy and gets added your list. Worth it for Better Call Saul and Transparent alone.
Yes/No: Yes (a great pairing with Netflix, if your budget can stretch that far).
The ANZ delivery of the US SVOD giant, now in over 55 countries around the world.
Launch: 24 March 2015.
Cost/mth: $8.99/1 device/SD; $11.99/2 devices/HD; $14.99/4 devices/4K.
Platforms: Chromecast, Apple TV, PC or Mac Desktop/Laptop (will not work with Chrome on Mac), iOS tablet/phone, limited Android tablet/phone; PS3, Wii U, Xbox One; TVs and Set Top Boxes to come.
Unmetered ISPs: iiNet, Internode, Optus.
Number of devices: Varies based on package selected.
Marquee content: House of Cards, Orange Is The New Black, Bloodline, The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Marvel’s Daredevil, Marco Polo.
Other agreements: Roadshow Entertainment, Disney, Beyond Distribution, ABC Australia.
Kids content: Yes.
Should I get it?: They’re the grandaddy of the SVOD block, with a mature platform on just about every device to boot. They have an aggressive release schedule (a new series every three weeks) and are now signing global agreements for content so that when they get it every service in every country they’re in gets it. They are commissioning content left, right and centre, and have form with House of Cards and OITNB when it comes to quality. If you have to pick just one this is it.
Yes/No: Absolutely Yes (a great pairing with Stan, if your budget can stretch that far).
*An hour of SD quality content is about 1 gigabyte of download when streamed; an hour of HD quality content is about 3 gigabytes of download when streamed.