BBC and ITV will launch BritBox streaming service in Australia

BBC and ITV will launch BritBox streaming service in Australia as battle heats up with Netflix, Amazon, Disney and Apple

  • New Australian offering will be run as a joint venture between broadcasters 
  • BritBox was first launched in North America in 2017 and in the UK last year
  • New service will go head to head with the likes of Foxtel and Fetch in Australia 

BBC and ITV are set to launch their BritBox streaming service in Australia as the broadcasters continue to battle with other online platforms such as Netflix, Amazon, Disney and Apple.

The platform was first launched in 2017 in North America and the service was later rolled out to homes across the UK in November 2019.

The new Australian offering will be run as a 50/50 joint venture between the BBC and ITV, which will be curated especially for an Australian audience, offering a range of UK box sets.

It comes just days after it was announced that the new series of Spitting Image would be launched on the platform later this year. 

BritBox launched the service in the UK last year in a bid to compete with other global streaming services worldwide 

BritBox, the new subscription streaming service launched by the BBC and ITV, is struggling to hold onto viewers once its free one-month trial has ended, according to research

It will be facing off with big Australian names such as Foxtel, one of the most popular television services in the country.

Fetch is another big player in the Australian market as well as Kayo, which offers exclusive sports content. 

Not all services are available in every region of Australia and BritBox could be the gap in the market many Australians are looking for. 

Just last year ITV sparked speculation that it would launch a global streaming service when it scrapped ITV Choice, the Asian version of its pay channel.

However, since the service launched in the UK in November last year it has struggled to hold onto its viewers.

The £5.99 service, which was launched last year, offers 283 box sets and claims to have a larger UK collection than rivals, including Amazon and Netflix.

However, only 1.5 per cent of respondents to a survey by Oliver & Ohlbaum Associates last month said they were paying a BritBox subscription after the 30-day free trial finished – equal to about 380,000 households.

By way of comparison, Netflix – which began its streaming service in 2010 – has over 60million subscribers in the US alone, and 148million paid subscriptions worldwide.

It has 9.1million streamers in the UK, who pay from £5.99-per-month to £11.99-a-month for 4K+HDR to watch series like The Crown and Stranger Things.

The £5.99 service (above), which was launched last year, offers 283 box sets and claims to have a larger UK collection than rivals, including Amazon and Netflix. However, only 1.5% of respondents to a survey by Oliver & Ohlbaum Associates said they were paying a BritBox subscription after the 30-day free trial finished – equal to about 380,000 households

Despite these figures, BritBox is still looking to expand and it today said that it will continue to evaluate opportunities for the roll-our of the service in additional territories across the world.

The service could look to garner more international viewers when it releases the new series of Spitting Image later this year, featuring Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

The series will air this autumn on BritBox, with Boris Johnson, his chief adviser Mr Cummings, US President Donald Trump, and the Duke of York to be ridiculed in puppet form.

Vladimir Putin, Bernie Sanders, Elon Musk, RuPaul, Adele and James Corden will also get the satirical treatment.

The show is the first original commission announced by BritBox UK, the streaming service launched by the BBC and ITV. 

UK streaming: What content Netflix, Amazon Prime, and others offer, and how much you have to pay to watch them

Disney’s big announcement is sure to shock Netflix, which has 9.1million UK subscribers, and Amazon Prime, with 6.4million customers (file photo)

Disney+ – which will normally cost £5.99-per-month – is offering UK customers a discounted £4.99-per-month ahead of its March 24 launch. Disney hopes to squeeze out its UK streaming competitors by throwing down the gauntlet. Ranked from most expensive to cheapest, UK streaming services offer their millions of loyal customers a range of content, including: 

Amazon Prime (£7.99-per-month):

  • The Grand Tour (motor enthusiasts Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May travel the world and get up to all sorts);
  • The Man In The High Castle (a post-World War II dystopia);
  • Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan (a CIA analyst combats terrorism)

Netflix (£5.99-per-month):

  • The Crown (the series that explores life in Buckingham Palace during the reign of Queen Elizabeth, as Britain finds its place in the post-1945);
  • Stranger Things (in 1980s Indiana, a group of young friends witness supernatural forces and secret government exploits);
  • You (a New York bookstore manager and serial killer develops a a disturbing and toxic obsession with women)

BritBox (£5.99-per-month):

  • Wolf Hall (a historical drama based on the life and loves of Henry VIII);
  • Extras (a down-on-his-luck actor struggles to make the big time);
  • Whitechapel (detectives deal with copycat historical murders)

Apple TV (£4.99-per-month):

  • The Morning Show (a newsroom satire starring Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, and Steve Carell set in the #MeToo era);
  • For All Mankind (an alternative history of a prolonged Space Race);
  • Truth Be Told (a true crime podcaster investigates a convicted killer, who continues to claim innocence years after the incident)

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