Everything We Know About Netflix in Australia
By Jenni Ryall for Mashable
The Netflix guessing game is a favourite pastime of television buffs in Australia, from guessing the launch date through to placing bets on the television shows that will air. There is no part of Netflix’s publicity brilliance that isn’t fuelled by excessive speculation.
Netflix is an on-demand streaming service for television shows and movies, based out of the U.S. Its competitors in Australia are the likes of Quickflix, Stan and Presto — who are all fighting for majority market share in the emerging space.
Whether Netflix can compete with the legacy on-demand service that is Quickflix, the media powerhouses behind Stan, co-owned by Nine Entertainment and Fairfax Media, or the persistence of Foxtel is yet to be seen.
The number one requirement on any TV junkie’s list has always been Netflix’s original drama series ‘House of Cards.’ With Foxtel showing the last two seasons, many doubted Netflix would be able to launch with it here. But now we know for sure: Netflix has confirmed to Mashable that the show, starring Kevin Spacey as its headliner, will be coming to Australia. The upcoming series 3 and the back catalogue will also be available.
Here is what we know so far about Netflix Australia:
Netflix is still being coy about a launch date in Australia, with most speculation pinpointing March as the launch month after the company released a bizarre tweet with this detail last year (Netflix has not since confirmed this information).
You can get your Netflix fix on 1,000 different devices. The app can be used on your Smart TV, PlayStation, Xbox, Apple TV and Fetch TV. Apps are available on iPads, iPhones and Android devices. Additionally, Google’s tiny Chromecast device supports Netflix as well.
The company has not yet released the cost of the subscription, but if the U.S. model is followed it should be around the $10 to $15 mark for an “all you can eat” service.
Unfortunately, for consumers, there is currently no way to avoid flicking between services for all your consumption needs. Most services charge a monthly fee, while Quickflix lets you just scoop up just the premium shows for a fee.
Quickflix: This service is $9.99 per month for an all-you-can eat back catalogue, plus extra for premium content, or you can instead just pay around $3 per episode for premium shows.
Quickflix has been in Australia since 2003, and has a large stable of content thanks to deals such as the one with defunct Bigpond Movies. The back catalogue of popular shows on this service such as Orange is the New Black, The Newsroom, True Blood and The Wire is impressive, which means you’ll have many hours of television content available.
Foxtel Presto: There is a movie service and a TV service — called Presto Entertainment — for $14.99 a month. The film content comes from subscription service Foxtel’s movie stable, while television content is drawn from a deal with free-to-air network Seven combined with shows from the original Foxtel channels.
The service’s exclusive TV deals extend to HBO shows such as Entourage, The Sopranos and Boardwalk Empire, with the exception of Game of Thrones. Showtime content is also available (but not exclusively), including Dexter and Californication.
Stan: This service is $10 monthly with no lock-in contracts. It kicked off in impressive style in 2015 with exclusive rights for Breaking Bad and its spinoff Better Call Saul, which was fast tracked from the U.S., along with acclaimed shows Mozart in the Jungle and Transparent. The Fairfax/Nine Entertainment venture has scored deals with Sony, MGM, Showtime, CBS, Village and MTV, to name a few.
It is also planning to get into the original content game, with two Australian series. These are Wolf Creek, based on the horror movie of the same name, and political drama Enemies of the State.
Disney: Netflix announced an exclusive deal with Disney in Australia, bringing movies such as Frozen, Cars, Monsters Inc, Thor and Captain America to the nation’s television screens. It also has secured the TV series Lost, Tangled and Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
Beyond: This deal sees a bunch of kids shows and Aussie comedians hit our screens. Including television shows from Carl Barron, Arj Barker, Kitty Flanagan and the Umbilical Brothers along with children’s favourites such as Lightning Point, Maya the Bee, Lalaloopsy,and The Hive.
New original series to be available:
Grace & Frankie: This 13-episode comedy series, starring Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, is set to be released on May 8. It follows the story of two 70-year-old women who, despite hating each other, have to learn to navigate the modern world after their husbands leave them for each other.
Sense8: This upcoming series is focussed around eight people in different parts of the world who are able to see, feel, hear and talk to each other as if they are in the same room. The bizarre connection occurred after a traumatic vision and the series follows the group discovering how to deal with their newfound connection, while avoiding an organisation that wants to capture them.