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Why should you compare streaming providers? For a long time, Australians have been paying through the nose for their news, sport and entertainment. In fact now the streaming market is stacked. With new players such as Paramount Plus, BINGE, Disney Plus and Apple TV Plus, joining the likes of now veteran services Netflix, Prime Video and Stan, accessing premium entertainment is easier and more affordable than ever. Comparing what each service offers and how much it costs could save you a fortune in the long run.
You need to consider a lot of factors before signing up with a streaming provider but it essentially boils down to a few: price, content, quality and compatible devices.
That's just the start. Which services offer a free trial? Which services have a lock-in contract?
We've done the hard yards for you and answered all those questions and more in the table below.
If you'd like to dig a little deeper we answer some commonly asked questions and explain why streaming is taking over further down the page.
Internet TV is televised content delivered to all sorts of connected devices, from personal computers to smartphones and mobile devices to video game consoles.
Also referred to as "IPTV' or "streaming", this technology enables viewers to watch television shows, movies, news and sport in real time over the Internet.
The streamed content is viewed through a website or native application that gives the viewer access to a live stream or library of television shows and movies.
With a steady Internet connection and compatible device, there is little difference from what traditional broadcast options offer.
This is a common deterrent for people looking to make the switch to streaming. Don't worry, there are plenty of devices you can use to stream your entertainment. In fact, you probably have 1 or 2 in your home already.
If you have a PC or Mac desktop or laptop computer, you're already halfway to streaming most major streaming services. Almost every streaming service can be accessed by the web browser you use daily.
One of the more popular devices to stream video on, smartphones and tablets allow you to binge TV shows, movies and news on the go. Most major streaming services are compatible with iOS, Android and Windows phones and even offer offline viewing options so you don't chew through your data.
Why fork out for a new television when you probably own a streaming-enabled device already? Game consoles such as PlayStation 4 and Xbox One have native apps for Netflix, Prime Video, Stan and more. The 4K-ready PS4 Pro and Xbox One X also allow you to stream 4K/UHD content (when connected to a 4K TV).
If you're not looking to fork out for a smart TV, you can choose from affordable streaming hardware options, including Google Chromecast, Apple TV and Fire TV. These will essentially transform your standard television into a smart TV.
There's a whole suite of devices and gadgets you can stream on. However, device compatibility varies from service to service. Find out more about your streaming hardware options in our guide.
Why is streaming taking over? Convenience. While you can live stream TV shows and movies as they happen, the main draw of streaming television is the thousands of classic movies and recent blockbusters available with the press of a button.
The wide selection of compatible devices also means you don't have to wait until you're home on the couch to catch up on the latest news and premium TV series. Streaming and Internet TV can be accessed from your office computer or from your smartphone on the commute home. And when you get home, you can continue what you were watching on your smart TV without missing a beat.
Streaming is also relatively cheap. For years, entertainment in Australia has been dictated by cable and satellite providers who charge upwards of $100 per month for the privilege of their services. On the other hand, Netflix charges just $9.99 per month at its lowest tier and offers quality original content and options for HD and 4K (ultra high definition) streaming at its higher tiers.
Because there is no content stored on your device, it means that you can take your entertainment on the go and pause a movie on your TV and continue to watch it on your phone or tablet during your commute to work. However, there is a small price for convenience as some streaming services can use up to 7GB per hour. Thankfully, some Australian mobile and broadband providers offer unmetered streaming for select services, so you don't risk going over your allotted data.
We've got the lowdown on providers that offer unmetered streaming and how to better manage your mobile data.
In 2016, Netflix began offering offline viewing that allows you to download select titles from its library to view without an Internet connection. Providers Stan, Amazon Prime Video, Disney Plus and hayu soon followed suit.
Well, that really depends on what kind of devices you intend to stream on. Netflix offers 4K/UHD streaming on a huge selection of 4K televisions. Powerhouse video game consoles such as PlayStation 4 Pro and Xbox One X, Blu-ray players and streaming media devices such as Fetch Mighty and Chromecast Ultra also allow for 4K streaming provided you have a 4K television/monitor to stream it through.
Slapping 4K on the box used to mean you'd be paying an arm and a leg for the latest and greatest television. But over the last few years, 4K displays have become more affordable. If you're lucky, you might even be able to nab 1 in an ALDI sale.
Stan and Prime Video began offering 4K/UHD plans soon after Netflix but with all 3 services, you'll pay a premium price for the finest viewing experience. Stan charges $19.00 per month for its 4K/UHD tier while Netflix charges $19.99 per month. Prime Video has only the 1-plan tier at $6.99 per month and has a bigger library than Netflix.
It's worth mentioning that paying extra for 4K with Netflix and Stan also allows you to stream on up to 4 devices simultaneously. If you're in a large household or run some side-hustle streaming group, you'll reap the benefits of 4K.
Some options are convenient but take a toll on your data while others take longer but allow offline viewing. Let us break down the differences.
Each month, TV shows and movies are added and removed from streaming services in Australia.
In the table below, we keep track of how many TV shows and movies are available.
|Provider||Number TV shows||Number of Movies|
Now that we've weighed up how each service compares, let's find that TV show you're looking for. Simply type the title of the movie in the search bar provided to track down where it is streaming in Australia.
This is all well and good but how exactly did Daenerys and her dragons end up on my smartphone? While it's not breathing fire or raising the dead, it's still quite magical. Let us show you how it's done.
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