Foxtel Is Adding TV Shows To Presto To Try To Ward Off Netflix

Foxtel Is Adding TV Shows To Presto To Try To Ward Off Netflix

So this isn’t exactly surprising: Foxtel has announced plans to add TV programming to its Presto on-demand streaming service. The obvious motive behind such a change? The imminent arrival of Netflix in March and Stan the month before that.

The newly-branded Presto Entertainment service is being launched as a joint venture with Channel Seven. That suggests that if nothing else there will be a big archive of old Home & Away episodes available, though Foxtel hasn’t yet released any specifics on programming, pricing or launch dates, beyond early 2015. (The deal requires approval by the ACCC.)

Foxtel has said Presto Movies will continue as a separate standalone offering; you’ll also be able to buy Entertainment on its own, or grab both (presumably at a discount).

The big challenge for Presto Entertainment will be pricing. Right now, the movies channel costs $9.99 a month on its own. That’s half the cost it was at launch, but it’s widely assumed that Netflix will charge around $10 a month for its TV-plus-movies service. Unless Foxtel halves its price again, it’s not going to look especially competitive.

Early 2015 is going to see a glut of streaming services appearing, with Netflix expected in March and Stan, a joint venture between Nine and Fairfax, due to appear in February. If there are going to be any customers left for Presto Entertainment, it will want to launch before the market becomes overcrowded.


  • Also remember that Presto does not stream HD content.
    So Netflix will have more content, HD delivery at a cheaper price.

    Foxtel REALLY needs to step up its game to compete, its not going to be the dominant-by-default provider anymore.

    • Don’t forget that netflix is available on EVERY android device, any modern web browser as well as virtually every streaming box available.

      Presto is available on only 6 specific models of Tablet (5 Samsung’s + Nexus 7) and iphones, just like foxtel go. If you want to use it with chromecast, you need to have one of those 6 devices (epic fail).

      Their list (at the above link) implies only Flash is required so it will be interesting to see if it works on my chromebook.

      • Hmm, no, Netflix is available on many devices, but not virtually every streaming box, unfortunately.

        • The streaming boxes and blu ray players released here in Australia may not have it, but expect netflix (and possibly presto & stan) to be pushed out to them via firmware update.

          Plus if you look around the net, there is a series of remote control commands you can go through for virtually any streaming box or blu ray player to change it’s region from Australia to the US (netflix, hulu, etc) or UK (BBC, channel5, uk netflix, etc)

  • I’d rather pay for Netflix in Aus and continue paying for and using US Netflix (more content) than pay any money to Foxtel at all. And as Gaz said above, it’s not even HD.

    • That’s what I may end up doing – it depends on whether presto comes out with just all old tv shows or actually has new content (say shown after a premiere on free to air (7) or foxtel).

  • That suggests that if nothing else there will be a big archive of old Home & Away episodes available

    Yeah… wouldn’t be holding my breath for that one! Maybe the newer episodes that have already been on Seven’s catch up service, but there’s no way in hell they’ll be going back through their archives and digitising all their old episodes!

  • Ive been using netflix and foxtel go recently and the difference is huge. Foxtel go, is poor quality, crashes and costs more! They really need to pick up their game. Also Popcorn time is free and works perfectly everytime. Pick it up foxtel!

    • Another example of the pirates producing something that works well, is easy and convenient for the user. The fact it doesn’t cost anything is just a bonus.

  • Presto(movies) + Boxsets+foxtel drama + some Channel 7 stuff in one package would present some form of alternative to Netflix but only if it is priced at $10. Netflix has a much larger catalogue, the interface is very user friendly and configurable by user and it is HD. Presto movies has newer content,and even with the addition of Boxsets and Foxtel drama +channel 7 content it would still lag far behind in the sheer volume of content that Netflix has to offer as well as still being SD. $10 for a new version of Presto with all the above would seem a reasonable price level given the pros and cons..

  • Another one lifehacker may have missed – Quickflix has been busy sending out free gift cards to current (and former) subscribers that you can pass on to friends and family for a few free months of quickflix. They also include some vouchers for some premium downloads as well.

    The idea being you get that for christmas, become interested in quickflix’s content, pay your money and not worry about netflix/presto/stan.

    It will be great to see presto add some TV shows and it will be interesting to see what they come up with. That still doesn’t change the fact that it’s hugely limited in what devices it works with. In 2015, presto should be available to all android devices.

    It’s not like they haven’t got any money to invest in getting a few droid programmers in.

  • To be fair I’m all for more competition. I have a feeling though you probably won’t need a Netflix US and Australian accounts it’d just depend on your ‘geolocation’

  • Poor poor rupert. As mentioned above, you’ll need to do a lot more than add some TV shows to ward off Netflix you horrible, despicable old man.

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