Netfilx headquarters in Los Gatos, California.
Netfilx headquarters in Los Gatos, California. Paul Sakuma

Netflix goes live in Australia with new and hit shows

NETFLIX launches in Australia today and the US-based company is undercutting its domestic rivals.

The streaming video on demand service is offering subscriptions from one dollar per month less than local services Stan, Presto and Quickflix.

The three-tiered pricing structure starts at $8.99 for standard definition content on one screen only.

Rather than basing subscriptions on television and movie content, Netflix's subscriptions are based on the number of devices included in the one plan and the quality of the picture.

Charlie Cox and Deborah Ann Woll in a scene from Marvel's Daredevil.
Charlie Cox and Deborah Ann Woll in a scene from Marvel's Daredevil. BARRY WETCHER

The most costly plan, at $14.99 per month, allows ultra high-definition (4K) streaming on up to four devices.

The service's software measures internet connection strength and the screen resolution of the device in use to automatically deliver the highest quality possible.

Like Presto and Stan, both of which launched earlier this year, Netflix is offering a free 30-day trial.

The new service, which already has more than 57 million subscribers around the world, is expected to secure the largest share of Australia's emerging streaming audience.

Lorenzo Richelmy in a scene from Marco Polo.
Lorenzo Richelmy in a scene from Marco Polo. Phil Bray

The company would not give any forecasted subscription numbers, with a spokesman saying "the first year is about building love for the brand".

Netlfix flew in a slew of overseas talent from its original TV shows for the Australian launch.

Speaking to APN in Sydney yesterday, Orange is the New Black star Uzo Aduba said she never thought the dark comedy would become such a global success.

"It's very humbling. It's beyond our imaginations, our dreams, our expectations, our realm of thinking," she said.

Taylor Schilling and Uzo Aduba in a scene from the TV series Orange is the New Black.
Taylor Schilling and Uzo Aduba in a scene from the TV series Orange is the New Black. Paul Schiraldi

"We've gone to countries like France and the UK and now Australia and you see people who really want to tell you how moved they are by the show."

Two things which set the more established Netflix apart from its Australian competitors is the accessibility of the service across a wide range of devices (Apple TV, major gaming consoles, smart TVs, Google Chromecast) and the breadth of content.

Netflix was the first streaming service to commission its own original content.

American political thriller House of Cards, starring Kevin Spacey, delivered the company its first major awards win.

All three seasons of House of Cards are available today, as well as new original series Marco Polo, New York comedy Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and family drama Bloodline starring Australian Ben Mendelsohn.

Tituss Burgess and Ellie Kemper in a scene from Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.
Tituss Burgess and Ellie Kemper in a scene from Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. Netflix

 

Marvel's Daredevil premieres on April 10, while the third season of Orange is the New Black premieres on June 12.



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