Stan vs netflix vs foxtel now, vs amazon prime

Before you sign up to anything, see how Netflix compares to Stan compares to Foxtel Now compares to.... well, you get the idea.

The days of waiting months for American TV shows to reach Aussie shores are long over. Thanks to streaming services like Stan, Foxtel Now and of course, Netflix, Australians can now keep up with the latest episodes of their favourite shows often day-and-date with the US.

There's only one downside to having so much entertainment available on-demand: how do you decide which service to sign up for? They all have their own pros and cons so we've broken down what each one brings to the table to help you make the right choice.

Streaming services at a glance

ServicePackagePrice Video qualityMaximum devices
Netflix (Aus)Single stream$9.99SD 1
Netflix (Aus)Double stream$13.99HD 2
Netflix (Aus)Four stream$17.994K Ultra HD 4
StanBasic$10SD 1
StanStandard$12HD 3
StanPremium$154K Ultra HD 4
Foxtel NowDocos/Lifestyle/Kids$10720p HD2
Foxtel NowDrama/Pop$15720p HD2
Foxtel NowMovies$20720p HD2
Foxtel NowSport$29720p HD2
hayuStandard$5.99HD1
Amazon Prime VideoStandardUS$5.994K Ultra HD with HDR support3

Shows and movies

netflix 250x450

Netflix has the clear lead when it comes to breadth of content, boasting an impressive 1156 TV shows and 2724 movies currently available to watch. This beats out Netflix's closest competitor Stan by a factor of 4:1 on TV shows and over 2:1 on movies. Of course, quantity doesn't equal quality, and the Australian Netflix library lacks many of the popular titles its American counterpart enjoys.

That's why Netflix has shifted its business model in recent years, focusing more on producing original content than acquiring the rights to existing shows and movies. This has worked out well for the service, with series like Daredevil, 13 Reasons Why and The Crown providing plenty of reason to subscribe.

The top series and movies on Netflix


The stan showtime dealStan might trail Netflix in terms of raw numbers, but it's snapped up the rights to plenty of big-name series that make up for its slimmer library. Shows like Preacher, Better Call Saul and iZombie are only available to stream on Stan in Australia, making it an attractive proposition if you're looking to keep up with the latest in American TV.

Original programming is an area Stan is trying to break into, too, though it remains far behind Netflix's vast library of homegrown content. Unless you're particularly keen on The Other Guy or No Activity, you'll probably want to look elsewhere for new, original content.

The top series and movies on Stan

  • Dexter
  • Mozart in the Jungle
  • Arrival

foxtel-now-logo-smallFoxtel Now's catalogue is considerably smaller than Netflix or Stan's, though it benefits from far timelier access to the latest American TV shows than either of its two main competitors. New episodes of shows like Game of Thrones and Wentworth typically air on Foxtel Now's channels mere hours after they premiere in America, which is perfect if you want to avoid getting spoiled on your favourite show as you wait the months it takes to hit other streaming services.

Sports is Foxtel Now's ace up its sleeve, since it's the only Aussie streaming service with the rights to live coverage of AFL, NRL, NBA, NFL, Super Rugby, European football and much more. It doesn't come cheap, but it gives Foxtel a distinct advantage over the competition.

The top series and movies on Foxtel Now


hayu's line-up is focused solely on reality TV, and its monopoly on this market is unquestionable. With new episodes from shows like Jersey Shore, Keeping Up With the Kardashians and The Real Housewives of New York City airing the same day as they do in the US, hayu is heaven for those who love watching people get nasty on live TV. Of course, if you have no interest in reality TV, hayu's library won't have much to offer you.

The top shows on hayu

  • Born in Chelsea
  • Famously Single
  • The Hills

amazon-prime-video-logo-smallAmazon Prime Video is the newest contender in the Australian streaming space, and its library is still in its infancy. That said, it's already making headway with original shows like The Grand Tour, American Gods and The Man in the High Castle, all of which have proved popular with critics and viewers alike.

The top series on Amazon Prime Video

  • Bosch
  • The Night Shift

Price

Pricing for Netflix's subscription tiers went up recently, eliminating the cost advantage it previously had over its competitors. A single-stream subscription will set you back $9.99 a month, though you'll only be able to watch content on a single device at a time and only in Standard Definition (SD). Upgrade to the double-stream subscription for $13.99 a month and you'll be able to stream on two devices simultaneously in High Definition (HD). Or you can go all out with a four-stream subscription and watch on four devices at a time in resolutions up to 4K Ultra HD for $17.99 a month.

Stan has a slight edge on Netflix in the pricing game. While its Basic subscription costs the same $10 a month for SD streaming on a single device at a time, its Standard subscription is only $12 a month and gets you HD streaming on up to three devices simultaneously. The Premium subscription is cheaper, too, running you $15 a month for up to four simultaneous streams with support for 4K Ultra HD.

Foxtel Now is the priciest of the Australian streaming services by a significant margin. While you can subscribe to either the Docos, Lifestyle or Kids packages for $1 a month each, the limited number of channels that gets you pales in comparison to the likes of Stan and Netflix's libraries. The Drama and Pop packages will cost you even more at $15 a month each, while the Movies package will set you back $20 a month and the Sports package $29 a month.

hayu has a distinct advantage on the cost front. Its limited scope allows it to charge just $5.99 a month for complete access to its catalogue of reality TV, which is impressive value for those who simply have to keep up with the Kardashians.

Amazon Prime Video benefits from slightly lower pricing than Stan and Netflix, sitting at US$5.99 (AU$7.58) a month for 3 concurrent streams at resolutions up to 4K Ultra HD. It's also the only service to support HDR lighting, provided you've got the TV to handle it.

Simplicity

Early on in the age of streaming, device support was wildly inconsistent between competing services. Now, however, Netflix, Stan, Foxtel Now, hayu, Amazon Prime Video and virtually every other streaming service available has rolled out easy-to-use apps on phones, tablets, gaming consoles and even smart TVs.

DeviceNetflixStanFoxtel NowhayuAmazon Prime Video
PCyesyesyesyesyes
Macyesyesyesyesyes
PS4yesyesyesNoNo
Xbox Oneyesyesyes **NoNo
PS3yesyesyes **NoNo
Xbox 360yesNoNoNoNo
iOSyesyesyesyesyes
Androidyesyesyesyesyes
Windows PhoneyesNoNoNoNo
Google Chromecastyesyesyesyesyes
Apple TVyesyesNoyesNo
Telstra TVyesyesyesNoNo
Fetch TVyesyesNoyesNo
Samsung Smart TVs*yesyesyes **Noyes
LG Smart TVs*yesyesyes **Noyes
Panasonic Smart TVs*yesNoNoNoNo
Sony Smart TVs*Noyesyes **NoNo
LG Blu-ray players*yesyesNoNoNo

* only available on select models
** currently available through the old Foxtel Play app

With most apps offering a similar home page of popular shows and recommendations along with search and browse functionality, finding the desired show or movie is as simple on one as it is on any of the others.

Internet usage and speed requirements

ServiceVideo qualitySpeed requiredData used per hour
NetflixMinimum0.5Mbps0.3GB
NetflixRecommended1.5Mbps0.7GB
NetflixSD3.0Mbps1.5GB
NetflixHD5.0Mbps3GB
NetflixUltra HD25Mbps7GB
StanMinimum2.0Mbps0.57GB
StanSD3.0Mbps1.13GB
Stan720p4.5Mbps2.025GB
StanHD7.5Mbps2.89GB
StanUltra HD15Mbps7GB
Foxtel NowSD3.0Mbps1.4GB
Foxtel NowHD7.0Mbps3.2GB
Amazon Prime VideoSD900Kbps400MB
Amazon Prime VideoHD3.5Mbps1.6GB

Note: hayu doesn't provide information on its Internet usage or speed requirements.

Netflix has a significant advantage over other streaming services in how low its Internet speed requirements are. With a connection of just 0.5Mbps, you can still stream Netflix, albeit with pretty poor picture quality. Amazon Prime Video also enjoys an edge here, as it only requires a 900Kbps connection to stream in Standard Definition (SD) compared to the 3.0Mbps every other service needs.

Comparing estimated data usage for each service, Stan has the upper hand thanks to its optimised streaming algorithms. These are designed to reduce data usage without affecting video quality, and are a big plus if you're straining under a small monthly data limit.

Features

If you spend a lot of time on-the-go without an Internet connection, being able to download your favourite shows and movies for viewing offline is mighty handy. Fortunately, Netflix, Stan, Amazon Prime Video and hayu all support offline downloads for many of their titles, making it easy to keep up-to-date with the latest episodes even when you're out and about. Foxtel Now, sadly, lacks any sort of download feature.

With Foxtel Now, however, you have more control over only paying for the content you actually want by picking and choosing between different channel packs. If all you’re interested in is live sports coverage, you won't need to purchase the Drama pack to get it; if you're getting Foxtel Now for your kids, you won't need to fork out for all those documentaries you're never going to watch.

Customer support

Stan makes one heck of a promise with its customer service: if you contact the support team any time between 8AM and midnight any day of the week, you'll get a response within 30 minutes. In contrast, Foxtel Now and hayu rely on their social media channels to handle support queries, which rarely provides the same level of assistance that a one-on-one email or phone conversation does. Netflix and Amazon Prime Video, meanwhile, both offer phone numbers and live chat interfaces for swift customer support.

Thankfully, Stan, Foxtel Now, Netflix and Amazon Prime Video all provide comprehensive FAQ sections on their websites you can search through without having to contact customer support. Foxtel Now even has a community forum where users often answer each other's questions, providing another source of assistance if the FAQ section doesn't resolve your problem. hayu's help centre, on the other hand, answers only the most basic questions, making it tricky to troubleshoot any problems you might have.

Two-week free trial with Foxtel Now from Foxtel Now

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30-day free trial of hayu from hayu

Take advantage of hayu's limited 30-day month trial and access thousands of hours of Keeping Up With the Kardashians, Made in Chelsea and so much more.

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20 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    DianneFebruary 4, 2018

    We are currently with foxtel looking to swapping to Netflix, only problem I am a huge cricket fan, from what I can work out cricket is not streamed on netflix is this right if so will it happen in the future

    • Staff
      MattFebruary 4, 2018Staff

      Hi Dianne,

      You are correct: Netflix does not currently stream cricket, nor any other live sports. While we can’t say for certain, it is quite unlikely that Netflix will stream cricket any time in the near future, either, since the service is primarily focused on on-demand movies and TV, rather than live broadcasts.

      Regards,

      Matt

  2. Default Gravatar
    DianneNovember 16, 2017

    You say:
    Many of the shows popular on the US Netflix, including House of Cards and Breaking Bad, have rights owned by other Australian streaming services.

    And while this is partially true, it is NOT true for House of Cards, which is a Netflix Original.

    • Staff
      MattNovember 16, 2017Staff

      Hi Dianne,

      Thanks for pointing this out! You’re right: Netflix owns the rights to House of Cards in Australia. We’ve updated the article to reflect this.

      Regards,

      Matt

  3. Default Gravatar
    Ben123August 19, 2017

    Is Cloudload a legitimate source? I cant find out much about it. They say anything is available there.

    • Staff
      MattAugust 19, 2017Staff

      Hi Ben,

      Thanks for your question. The way Cloudload works is by storing your video and music files on its servers and letting you stream them to any device over the Internet. This in itself is fine, so long as you own the rights to stream the video or audio in question. So uploading and streaming the music CD you bought would be fine.

      On the other hand, Cloudload also lets you add content to your account from sources like YouTube and torrents. Unless the particular content you add is explicitly free-to-distribute (like an independent film the creator has relinquished the rights to), it’s illegal to stream this content without purchasing it.

      In short, Cloudload is only legitimate if you own the rights to the content you stream through it.

      I hope this helps!

      Regards,

      Matt

  4. Default Gravatar
    LSprattApril 11, 2017

    My mother in law was thinking about getting foxtel but i was thinking netflix or stan was probably better for her.
    Shes a big series fan but not much for reality sports action stuff eg:drwho, NCIS, Flash, Arrow, DCLOT, MASH, Midsomer murders, Frost, etc
    we have a old laptop we were going to donate to her for connection but shes not very tech savvy doesn’t even have facebook
    she often goes out and finds series on sale and buys them usually out of order
    she recently got a new tv im pretty sure with laptop connectability.
    which provider would you suggest for her?

    • Staff
      ArnoldApril 12, 2017Staff

      Hi Logan,

      Thanks for your inquiry.

      Based on the information you gave, I would suggest getting Netflix for your mother in law.
      Before you choose, please check the channel listings of each provider at http://www.finder.com.au.

      Hope this information helped.

      Cheers,
      Arnold

  5. Default Gravatar
    LukeAugust 31, 2015

    What sort of data usage would I be looking at

    • Staff
      BrodieAugust 31, 2015Staff

      Hi Luke,

      You can find information on data for each of these services under the “Data and Broadband” tab of this page.

      Hope that helps,

      Brodie

  6. Default Gravatar
    MicheleAugust 15, 2015

    HI and thank you for this very informative table. I Think 2 information are missing.

    1. Subtitles support?

    2. Provided audio quality (e.g. AC3, DTS, AAC), which would be useful especially for people with a dolby amplifier. I know this will be dependent on the move but at least I would like to know if a platform supports it or not.

    Thank you!

    Michele

    • Staff
      BrodieAugust 18, 2015Staff

      Hi Michele,

      Thanks for the great feedback. Currently, we have a comparison of services that provide closed captioning here but nothing on audio quality. I’ll keep your email address handy and let you know when we add the information to our comparison table.

      All the best,

      Brodie

  7. Default Gravatar
    HelenMay 30, 2015

    will Wentworth be on next lick in Australia soon .

    • Staff
      BrodieJune 1, 2015Staff

      Hi Helen,

      Thanks for the question. Please note that finder.com.au is an online comparison service and does not represent Netflix Australia. If you would like to keep up to date with program releases, please keep visiting this page and follow Netflix Australia’s social media channels.

      Thanks,

      Brodie

  8. Default Gravatar
    SpottyzebraMay 20, 2015

    How come some Australian shows (eg X Factor) post their full episodes on the internet to allow people to watch them up to 3 weeks after the show has aired whilst others (eg Married at first sight) doesn’t?

    • Staff
      BrodieMay 25, 2015Staff

      Hi Spotty Z,

      That is odd, but it would likely have to do with the deal the creators have with the network. Shows like X-factor are a sure hit, so it makes sense for the network to pay more to have it readily available on their website, whereas Married at First Sight is brand new and is yet to prove it’s worth.

      Hope I’ve helped,

      Brodie

  9. Default Gravatar
    ShaeytApril 3, 2015

    When will Netflix Au have the same variety as the US version, and will any Australian streaming have all the shows foxtel does?

  10. Default Gravatar
    RoseashmFebruary 10, 2015

    I am looking for the best Free Movies for my Samsung TV with HDMI point ,not using chromecast.

    • Staff
      AlexFebruary 13, 2015Staff

      Hi Rose, thanks for getting in touch.

      I might be a bit confused, but if you’re connecting your Samsung TV with an HDMI cable, it will serve as a monitor only (not a TV).

      As far as accessing free movies goes, if you have a Smart TV you should be able to watch free movies using services like SBS On Demand.

      There aren’t many legal ways of accessing free movies, but many of the services above have movies included as part of their package. You view their content on offer online. Most packages start at around $10 a month, so while it’s not free, it’s not overly expensive, either.

      I hope this helps, and please feel free to get in contact again if this didn’t fully answer the question.

      Cheers,
      Alex

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