If you haven’t signed up to a streaming service by now, you may be missing out on some great movie nights and binge sessions. With so many options available in Australia, the hardest part is often choosing which streaming service to go with.
Is the cheapest service the best? Is one easier to use than the other? Which caters best to my taste in movies and television? To answer these questions, we have reviewed four of the most popular streaming services in Australia – Foxtel Now (and Binge), Stan, Netflix, and Disney+.
Foxtel Now vs Stan vs Netflix vs Disney+: Which is best?
Foxtel Now is Foxtel’s latest reincarnation of their streaming service – which was previously known as ‘Foxtel Play’ and was more focused on live TV at the time. The service aims to rival household favourites such as Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, and Stan.
In terms of pricing, the cost of Foxtel Now will depend on which channel packs you choose. While the ‘Essentials’ Pack is the cheapest plan option at $25 per month, the content available is limited. Additional channels and content packs could add to your monthly cost, and if you wish to use all of their Packs it will cost you more than $100 per month! Economically speaking, Foxtel Now will likely turn out to be a more expensive option than other streaming services available right now.
If you’re ready to ditch the dish on your roof, but not ready to give up on re-watching the entire Game of Thrones series back-to-back, Foxtel Now could be your match.
Is Foxtel Now the same as Binge?
No, however they are similar! You may have noticed that both services have a strikingly similar content library; that’s because the same parent company – Streamotion – runs both of these apps.
Both services have massively popular HBO shows available on demand – such as The Last of Us, House of Dragons, Game of Thrones, Westworld, The Sopranos, and The Wire.
Which subscription you choose will be mostly based on how you prefer to consume content, as the main feature of Foxtel Now is its channel packs and live TV. If you prefer to stream content on-demand, Binge comes at a much more affordable cost starting from $10/month for Standard Definition streaming.
However, Binge’s $10/month ‘Basic’ subscription is about to change after March 2023 to include some advertisements to the tune of “a few minutes of ads per hour of on-demand content viewed”. It’s not all bad news, though, as these changes also add High-Definition streaming to this plan.
While High Definition is available on both services, both Foxtel Now and Binge do not currently support 4K quality and can end up being much more expensive if you’re adding sports and channel packs to your subscription.
If money isn’t an issue – you’ll find the amount of exclusive TV series and new release movies available from either of these services a big plus.
If you’re looking for a streaming service skewed more towards an Australian audience, Stan is the choice for you. Co-owned by Nine Entertainment Co. and Fairfax Media, Stan broke into the scene in January 2015 with a large library of content, exclusive offerings, and lots of home-grown Aussie content.
Stan’s pricing structure is uncomplicated and, like Netflix, how much you pay will determine the video quality and ability to access simultaneous streaming. The three plans on offer from Stan are:
$10 per month (SD, stream on one device at a time)
$14 per month (HD, stream up to 3 devices at a time)
$19 per month (4K, stream up to 4 devices at a time)
Stan also has an add-on pack for streaming select sports live and on-demand, including Grand Slam Tennis and the IndyCar series.
Stan is best known for its Australian shows including original series such as No Activity, Wolf Creek and Romper Stomper. Stan also has a range of international partnerships, which has resulted in securing exclusive shows such as Twin Peaks, Billions, and ‘First on Stan’ series like Better Call Saul – the popular Breaking Bad spinoff.
Like most streaming services, the Stan app is available on most devices and features the option to download content for viewing offline (which is great for long car rides). But unlike Netflix, it isn’t available to use in countries outside of Australia. However, for some people, the focus on Australian content makes up for this restriction.
Netflix is inarguably the biggest name in online media streaming, and the brand that every other service is trying to compete with. With its vast library, competitive pricing, and original content – it’s easy to see why.
In terms of cost, Netflix is moderately priced. Unlike Foxtel Now, you do not have to spend more to access certain types of content. Instead, Netflix has pricing that varies depending on the resolution (quality) you wish to watch content in and the number of devices using your account at the same time.
The 4 recently updated plan options are as follows:
$6.99 per month (HD, stream on one device at a time, with approx. 4 minutes of ads per hour)
$10.99 per month (HD, stream on one device at a time, no ads, download on 1 device at a time)
$16.99 per month (FHD, stream up to 2 devices at a time, no ads, download on 2 devices at a time)
$22.99 per month (4K, stream up to 4 devices at a time, no ads, download on 6 devices at a time)
Netflix has a massive library, which also includes some exclusive content (known as Netflix Originals). These exclusives include popular titles such as Stranger Things, House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, Altered Carbon, Riverdale, and Black Mirror – to name just a few. Netflix also offers lots of stand-up comedy specials and has an extensive library of revolving content from various genres.
Often, people will choose Netflix for its ease of use and familiarity, or to access its exclusive content. For first timers, it’s a great place to start when venturing into the wide world of streaming.
Looking for an all-in-one solution for your streaming needs? Good news – you can stream Netflix, Stan, Disney+, and other streaming apps from an Aussie Broadband Fetch TV service. Click here to find out more about plans and pricing.
Disney+ differs from other popular streaming services in the way that some desirable features (such as 4K Ultra HD quality and multi-device streaming) are included in the subscription with no features or content locked behind an additional cost.
A monthly subscription to Disney+ will set you back $13.99 each month. One thing that gives Disney+ a leg up compared to other streaming services is their yearly payment option – which has a $2/month discount when paid annually.
The all-in-one subscription model allows up to 4 devices to be streaming at the same time, and you can have unlimited (offline) content downloads on up to 10 different devices. Additionally, a Disney+ subscription allows you to use their GroupWatch feature – where you can invite up to 6 other people with a Disney+ subscription to watch something together at the same time without needing to be in the same location.
While the service has great parental controls available, don’t let the Disney brand fool you – there is plenty of content for grown-ups and kids alike! Disney+ has a large content library including The Simpsons, Modern Family, American Horror Story, The X-Files, as well as the Marvel Studios and Star Wars franchises.
If you’re overwhelmed by the different plans offered by other streaming services or simply looking for a place to binge-watch your favourite heroes and princesses, Disney+ is definitely your vibe.
Weighing up the options
When it comes to deciding which streaming services you want to subscribe to, there’s no one solution for everybody. These four streaming services offer extensive libraries of great content at reasonable prices – so it’s really a matter of personal preference.
If you’re worried about missing out on live sports and TV, Foxtel Now is the way to go. If you’re craving a binge-sesh of House of Cards in 4K, Netflix has got you covered. For content with more of an Aussie flavour, Stan might be a preferrable option for your consideration. With so many options for streaming platforms available in 2023, many consumers subscribe to a combination of brands that have access to the franchises and studios they like the most.
Most of these services offer a free trial period and the ability to cancel at any time, which allows you to explore each of their apps and what movies, sports, and TV shows are available.
Please note: pricing in this article is as of March 2023. It’s best to double-check the costs before signing up to a service.
Articles like this
Aussie Fibre rollout and what it means for you
As we come close to completing our Aussie Fibre network build, we’ve had lots of questions about how it affects our customers and their services – pa...
13 July 2022 | 2 min read
Business internet vs home internet: What’s right for you?
The global pandemic had a huge impact on Australian small businesses, changing how and where they conducted business. For many, the biggest change in...
28 February 2022 | 8 min read