Foxtel to launch new streaming service

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The Aussie video streaming market looks like it’s going to get a lot more crowded, with Foxtel beta-testing a new streaming service.

With a working title of ‘Binge’, this drama and entertainment streaming platform will be ready to launch on 25 May, 2020 — and it’s really not a moment too soon for the struggling media company. While there was plenty of speculation and rumours floating around about this streaming service, Foxtel have finally confirmed some details before its launch.

“We have been beta-testing the service for a few weeks and we are sure Australians will love everything about it. It brings an exciting new brand to younger streaming audiences with a very different and compelling product experience, and a distinctly curated mix of the best drama and movies from the world’s best entertainment brands.” says Foxtel Group Chief Executive Officer Patrick Delany.

Foxtel has been suffering from dropping subscriber numbers for a while, with Australia’s media landscape changing so much in the past 10 years. Add in the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on live sport as well as the tightening of household budgets, and Foxtel has suffered from a loss of subscribers and advertising revenue. The ACCC’s COVID-19 taskforce even had to step in, after fielding complaints from consumers unable to reach Foxtel to change or cancel their subscription. This resulted in Foxtel assuring the ACCC that it had increased its call centre capacity to cope with the increased volume of customer calls.

Pandemic or not, Foxtel has been struggling to keep subscribers for a while. Since streaming services like Netflix, Stan and Disney+ launched in the Australian market, the traditional Pay TV format hasn’t been able to keep up with the changing consumer demands. Customers cannot justify paying $100+ per month for a range of channels and content that can only be viewed live like traditional TV, when they could pay around $10 per month for a huge content library that can be viewed on demand. Waiting around for an 8pm screening of your favourite show each week has really lost its appeal to many Aussies.

What can you watch on Foxtel’s new streaming service?

Still of Jon Snow at Winterfell from Season 8 of HBO show Game of Thrones
Source: HBO

Details on this are currently unconfirmed, however it’s very likely that this new streaming platform will host the content that HBO Max will be offering. As we recently covered at Canstar Blue, Foxtel and HBO’s parent company, Warner Media, have reached an agreement, cementing Foxtel as the continuing home of HBO content, including a huge library of successful shows such as Game of Thrones and Big Little Lies.

HBO Max is set to launch in the US with plenty of original programming in the mix, including the postponed but much anticipated Friends reunion special. It seems likely that this new ‘Binge’ streaming platform will act as Australia’s version of HBO Max, along with the other Warner Media assets Foxtel now has the rights to.

Streaming for the whole family with Disney+

After the 2019 Disney+ launch, Foxtel lost access to some of the most popular franchises around, including Star Wars and much of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, not to mention Disney and Pixar classics.

If you’re not signed up to Disney+ and are looking for some great family-friendly entertainment, there are two plan options to choose from – a monthly subscription at just $8.99 per month, or prepay for a whole year at $89.99 and save on the monthly cost. Both plans include the same features, with unlimited downloads and the ability to stream on up to four screens at the same time. This table includes links to a referral partner.

Brand Subscription Type No. of Screens/same time viewing Advertised Cost^^/month or year
Disney+ Logo

Disney+ Monthly Subscription

  • Stream the Disney+ library, including Disney+ Originals, Star Wars, Pixar, Marvel & National Geographic
  • Watch on 4 screens at the same time
  • Add up to 7 profiles
  • Unlimited downloads of shows and movies on up to 10 devices
  • 7 days FREE trial (New Customers Only)

min. cost $8.99 over one month

4No. of Screens /same time viewing $8.99
Advertised Cost/month
Get DealCanstar Blue receives a commission for sign-ups through Disney+ *
Disney+ Logo

Disney+ Yearly Subscription

  • Stream the Disney+ library, including Disney+ Originals, Star Wars, Pixar, Marvel & National Geographic
  • Watch on 4 screens at the same time
  • Add up to 7 profiles
  • Unlimited downloads of shows and movies on up to 10 devices
  • Prepay for a yearly subscription and save on the monthly cost
  • 7 days FREE trial (New Customers Only)

min. cost $89.99 over one year

4No. of Screens /same time viewing $89.99
Advertised Cost/month
Get DealCanstar Blue receives a commission for sign-ups through Disney+ *

What will happen to Foxtel Now?

Foxtel Now is Foxtel’s answer to Netflix and the rest, essentially a streaming on-demand version of its Pay TV channels. However, pricing for Foxtel Now has long been a sore point for many, with its $25 per month base price (and up to $104 per month for all available packs). In comparison, if you were to sign up to the basic Netflix and Stan subscriptions, as well as Disney+, you’d be paying just under $30 per month for all three subscription services.

As to whether this new streaming service will replace Foxtel Now remains to be seen, but if Foxtel moves its more popular assets from HBO to this new streaming platform, existing Foxtel Now subscribers might just be tempted to make a switch.

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