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Netflix Australia: Price, features and content
Netflix is one of the most popular streaming services on the market, but is it really your best option for on-demand video in Australia?
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The biggest streaming service in the world really needs no introduction, but here's one anyway. With humble beginnings as a DVD delivery service, Netflix essentially paved the way for streaming video on demand single-handedly. After a huge global launch in January 2016, the world's entertainment providers and media giants have tried to keep up.
With partnerships with companies like DreamWorks under its belt, Netflix is consistently rolling out high-quality original content for all tastes and ages. This consistent stream of quality originals is one thing but the company can attribute a big part of its success to innovative streaming technologies, like developing its own compression technology and toying with interactive content.
With that said, the company is far from perfect and might not necessarily be the best option for you. Read on for a deep-dive on Netflix plans and pricing and how it compares against the Australian competition.
What is Netflix?
We're pretty sure you know the answer to this, but just in case you've landed from outer space – back in 1997, Netflix changed the way movies were rented in the US. Subscribers could view the company's selection of movies online, order what they wanted and have the DVD delivered to their mailbox. Fast-forward a decade and, 10 years after its introduction, Netflix delivered its billionth DVD and was looking to introduce video on demand using the Internet.
Online streaming of video through Netflix turned the company from being one of the post office's biggest customers to being the largest source of Internet traffic in North America by 2010.
By 2011, Netflix began to acquire content that would be exclusive to its service. Major blockbuster shows like House of Cards and Orange is the New Black put it on the map, while partnerships with Marvel for Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and Iron Fist expanded the audience. Netflix is also investing billions in original content to cater to its rapidly growing international audience.
When did Netflix launch in Australia?
Netflix launched in Australia and New Zealand on 24 March 2015. While there was some early dismay around Netflix ANZ's comparatively shallow library, it has since grown to rival some of the bigger international TV and movie catalogues. By January 2018, Netflix's library had grown by 114% with 2,400 TV and movie titles, compared to the much smaller launch offering of 1,120 titles. The Netflix Australia and New Zealand launch was just the beginning and 1 year later the streaming giant revealed its plan for international expansion.
Then, at CES 2016, Netflix shocked the world by switching on in almost 200 different countries around the world. As of August 2021, Netflix is available in every country around the globe except China, North Korea and Syria, as well as the disputed territory of Crimea, though the content libraries vary greatly. For a full rundown of what's available on Netflix around the globe, check our international Netflix TV and movie lists.
Does Netflix have a free trial?
While Australians were once able to enjoy 30 days of free Netflix that's no longer the case. Netflix removed the free trial in March 2020.
Netflix service plans start at $10.99/month for a single standard definition stream. There are no contracts with Netflix so you can cancel the service at any time, but until then your credit card that was used to sign up will automatically be charged each month.
There are 3 plans offered by Netflix that you can choose from: Basic, Standard and Premium. The plan you pick will depend on the types of features you want with your Netflix subscription.
Unfortunately, for Aussies as of November 11 2021, they will start paying even more for Netflix if they have a Standard or Premium plan. Standard plans increased for the second time in 14 months and now cost $16.99 instead of $15.99 a month. While Premium plans rose by 15% from $19.99 to $22.99 a month.
How much data will Netflix use?
This depends on what quality you're streaming Netflix at. Usage varies depending on whether you're streaming in SD, HD or 4K. Below is a guide to how much data Netflix will consume at each quality grade:
- Low quality: 300MB/hour
- Standard definition (SD): 700MB/hour
- High definition (HD): 3GB/hour
- 4K/ultra HD (UHD): 7GB/hour
More information on data usage
Netflix comes with numerous features that make streaming a seamless and accessible experience. You can set up multiple profiles, so every member of the household can create their own watchlist and get personalised recommendations. There is a special Kids profile and you can set parental controls. Streaming works well on all devices Netflix is compatible with.
Additionally, you can download content from Netflix to watch offline, watch with closed captions or subtitles and even adjust playback speed. Audio descriptions are available for a lot of titles. There's a Skip Intro button for when you're in a rush and the service auto-plays episodes so you can binge-watch for as long as you want. If you don't know what to watch, you can use Play Something and Netflix will automatically choose a title for you.
How can I download content from Netflix?
Netflix lets you download titles to tablets, smartphones and computers running Windows 10. That way, you can enjoy all your favourite Netflix TV shows and movies when you're on the go without burning through your mobile data.
We have an in-depth step-by-step guide on how to download from Netflix that will help you get started. Not all titles on Netflix are available for download, depending on licensing rights. However, a big part of the library is accessible offline as well.
Netflix is one of the most popular streaming services in Australia, but the competition is getting fiercer each year. Services like Prime Video, BINGE, Disney+, Paramount Plus and Stan are worthy competitors, with niche services like Acorn TV and Shudder also available to cater to viewers with more specific tastes.
An appealing aspect that Netflix has over other video streaming providers is the number of devices you can use to access the movies and TV series. These include:
Where can I buy a Netflix gift card?
Netflix Australia offers gift cards priced at $20, $30 and $50. These can be gifted to a friend or family member, or even used by you if you're particularly concerned about storing your payment details online. Click the link below for a list of stores where you can purchase Netflix gift cards in Australia.
How can I cancel Netflix?
Netflix comes with no strings attached, so you can cancel your subscription anytime. Simply go the Account page and select Cancel Membership. You will still have access to your plan until the end of your billing period and you can restart your membership whenever you want. For an in-depth guide, we have step-by-step instructions on how to cancel Netflix.
Can I access US Netflix in Australia?
Not really. Depending on where you're located, you get access to the local Netflix library, which can differ from the US library due to licensing rights. So if you're in Australia, you get access to the Australian content library.
Keep in mind that Netflix original productions, which make up a huge chunk of the platform's library, are available globally. Plus, there's so much content on Netflix AU that it's doubtful you'll run out of stuff to watch anytime soon.
When will new content be coming to Netflix?
New content is arriving on Netflix on a regular basis – literally every week. We list new releases heading to Netflix at the beginning of each month to make it easy for users to plan their watchlist accordingly.
Alternatively, you can check the Coming Soon section in your Netflix app for a quick overview of upcoming titles heading for the platform.
Netflix Australia FAQs
We monitor Netflix content additions and removals daily. At any given time, there tends to be at least 2,000+ TV shows and 4,000+ movies. TV highlights include global hits like Stranger Things, Lucifer, The Witcher, Virgin River, The Crown and more.
To browse the complete TV show and movie libraries for Netflix, follow the links below.
TV on Netflix Australia
Need a new show to binge watch? Here's a full list of shows on Netflix Australia.
Movies on Netflix Australia
Whether it's a blockbuster or indie, you'll find it on Netflix Australia.
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