We all love our entertainment, and with the explosion of television streaming apps in recent years we can now get what we want.
In this article we'll outline some of the great streaming apps currently available. Out of the box, TCL televisions come pre-installed with many of these apps.
With the apps that are not pre-installed, it is quite simple to download them through the Google Play store. This is just one of the great things about televisions operating on the Android TV and Google TV platforms.
Now to our list;
The first well-known streaming service, Netflix helped change the home entertainment landscape.
Netflix offers a vast range of TV shows and movies across all genres, including a wide variety of geographical regions and languages other than English. They also produce a considerable amount of their own exclusive content, known as Netflix Originals.
Pricing as of the time of writing (all prices in Australian dollars);
- $10.99 per month for a basic subscription. This includes content delivered in SD (Standard Definition) format only, and simultaneous streaming to one device at a time.
- $16.99 per month HD (High Definition) streaming / up to 2 devices simultaneously.
- $22.99 per month 4K resolution streaming / up to 4 devices.
Netflix has one of, if not the biggest content library including a lot of exclusive content. Additionally, they have a more international flavour of titles which can be quite interesting.
Stan is another one of the top streaming services available. Similar to Netflix, they have a wide variety of TV entertainment and movies including their own exclusive content. Stan does tend to lean a little more towards fast-tracked US-based shows rather than the more international flavour of Netflix content.
Pricing of Stan subscriptions:
- $10 per month SD quality to 1 screen.
- $14 per month HD quality to up to 3 screens.
- $19 per month 4K quality up to 4 screens.
- Stan also offer a Sports addon for $10 / month offering a range of live and on-demand sporting event coverage.
A fast rising star in streaming apps, Disney+ has gained great support quickly due to their specific content.
Disney+ is the home to the Star Wars and Marvel superheroes universes. It is the best place to see the widest range of movies and TV shows from these. Disney+ also hosts Pixar and Disney movies (obviously), National Geographic documentaries, plus a range of other content.
Pricing for Disney+ streaming:
- $11.99 per month, or $119.99 per year.
Disney+ has only one pricing tier. All subscriptions come with simultaneous streaming for up to 4 devices and content delivery in HD (and 4K for selected titles).
An Amazon Prime subscription delivers a wide variety of entertainment across many genres, including exclusive content known as "Amazon Originals". In general, though, they have less content than either Netflix or Stan. Amazon Prime also offers many new releases (plus oddly, some very old releases) as rentals or purchases.
It will be interesting to see what content becomes available in the future as Amazon has recently acquired MGM Studios in Hollywood. MGM is the studio behind Robocop and the James Bond movies, amongst many other films and TV shows.
An Amazon Prime subscription costs:
- $6.99 per month, or $59 per year.
Your Amazon Prime subscription comes bundled with some added benefits the other can't offer. These include access to a rotating selection of ebooks and over two million tracks of music streaming. It also includes free shipping on eligible items purchased through the Amazon marketplace.
As a streaming service, Binge tends to focus more on TV shows than movies (not to say they don't have some good ones). Some notable shows include Game of Thrones, the Walking Dead, and the Sopranos.
- $10.00 including 1 device.
- $16.00 including 2 devices with HD quality.
- $18.00 including 4 devices with HD quality.
Much of the content is shared with other streaming services, however, there are some shows that are exclusive.
Much of the content for Paramount+ comes from ViacomCBS; a merger between Paramount Pictures and CBS. They offer some interesting exclusive TV shows, plus a catalogue of around 400 movies.
Paramount+ has also secured the rights to the Australian A-League and W-League soccer competition. This should see the live streaming of every match, plus coverage of Socceroos and Matildas matches.
Pricing for Paramount+ is:
- $8.99 per month, or $89.99 per year.
The blend of sports, TV, and movies may make this a good selection for some.
Britbox focuses exclusively on the best of British television and film. Here you'll find old favourites such as the Goodies and Doctor Who (all the Doctors); police dramas such as Prime Suspect and Line of Duty, plus many other comedies, dramas, documentaries, and lifestyle shows.
Pricing for Britbox is:
- $8.99 per month, or $89.99 per year for up to 4 devices.
If you really need your Brit fix, take a look at Britbox.
Hayu styles itself as the home of reality TV shows. If you love your Real Housewives, True Crime, Cooking shows, or other reality TV, this could be the app for you.
Pricing for Hayu:
- $6.99 per month, or $61.99 per year.
Hayu can only stream on one device at a time.
In case you didn't guess, Shudder focuses on the horror and thriller genres. With a wide selection of scary movies and TV shows, including exclusives, a Shudder subscription will keep your adrenaline pumping.
Shudder subscription cost:
- $8.99 per month
Officially Shudder only works on one device at a time, however, it is possible to view on up to 3 screens simultaneously.
Originating back from the old days of cable television, Foxtel no longer requires a dedicated cable connection.
A little different than the others, Foxtel subscriptions start with the "Essentials Pack" containing a range of news, lifestyle, and general channels. Extra sets of specific channels can be purchased as Addons.
- $25.00 per month Essential pac
- +$29.00 per month Sports addon
- +$20.00 per month Movies addon
- +$10.00 per month Drama addon
- $104.00 per month Ultimate Bundle including all of the above, plus Kids channels and Documentaries.
- All subscriptions are for viewing on up to 5 devices.
Offering live and on-demand sports viewing, Kayo features coverage of over 50 sports.
Kayo screens sporting matches from AFL Premier League and local matches, Rugby League, NRL, World Cup, and Super League competitions, T20 and test cricket, Motorsports and more. If you absolutely must get your fill of darts, field hockey, or lacrosse (amongst others) then Kayo could be the subscription for you.
All subscriptions offer High Definition (HD) quality streaming.
Featuring more live soccer (sorry, football) than any other service. Optus Sports provides full access to Premier League, Women's Super League, LaLiga, International matches, and more.
Optus Sports also offers a wide selection of on-demand fitness videos to workout to.
Optus Sports pricing:
- $24.99 per month.
A must for football fanatics.
Flash is a dedicated news streaming service featuring over 25 news channels. Channels include BBC, Fox News, Aljazeera, Sky News, CNN, Bloomberg, and more.
Pricing for Flash News
- $8.00 per month.
A great services for keeping in touch with events all around the world.
Local Channels – Free to air streaming
At the end of the list we have all the streaming channels delivered by each of the main Australian broadcasters.
These channels provide on-demand versions of recently broadcast TV shows. In addition, they often deliver a range of additional and on-demand content that is not broadcast on the corresponding over-the-air channels.
The streaming services are;
- ABC iView
These streaming channels are a great place to explore options, with the added bonus of being completely free. You may need to put up with some ads, though.
With such a proliferation of streaming apps and services it can be difficult to choose. Many people choose one or two of the main services plus a specialty service to fill in the gaps.
Some people, after enjoying the content of one service for a while, will pause their subscription and switch to an alternative one. This way, when they come back a little later there will be a whole range of new content to enjoy.
In the end, choose a service based upon your entertainment preferences. After all, that's what they're there for.