Meet Stan: Australia's Most Ambitious Streaming Service Yet

What would it take to get you to stop downloading shows via BitTorrent or accessing Netflix via a VPN? How about a streaming service that costs less than $10 per month with access to new US shows as they become available across smartphone, tablet and TV-based streaming products? Meet Stan: the new streaming service for Australia, born out of StreamCo.

For those not familiar with StreamCo, it's the joint venture between Nine Entertainment Co and Fairfax Media. In the interest of disclosure, Fairfax owns Allure Media, which publishes Gizmodo Australia.

The StreamCo partnership was created with a single aim: launch a streaming product that Australians will actually use.

StreamCo figured out that the reason people weren't using Australian streaming services like Quickflix or Presto is because the product was either too expensive or didn't have the content available that customers wanted.

Indeed in its own research, it found that half of pirates it surveyed would pay for the content they were downloading if it were available on a cheap and convenient platform.

With all this research and an industry-leading Mr Fix It in new CEO, Mike Sneesby (formerly of Cudo), StreamCo was able to create a streaming product called Stan.

Speaking with us exclusively this morning, Mike Sneesby said that Stan would not only carry the content Australians were desperate to watch, but also content that nobody else could carry in the local market.

Stan will exclusively carry the back catalogue of Breaking Bad in Australia when the service launches early next year, and it will also hold exclusive rights to the hotly-anticipated spin-off, Better Call Saul.

"Nobody else will have that," he told us this morning. "Not Foxtel, not Netflix, not broadcast," he added. "We make a deal that sees us put it onto Nine, but only if we say so."

Sneesby added that the Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul deal is part of a larger Sony Pictures deal that will see new film and TV franchise exclusives coming to Stan every week leading up to the launch. The newly-minted streaming service will also have exclusives from other big international studios too, and while the CEO won't be drawn on what those titles are just yet, he did reveal how they chose the targets.

"If it's big on BitTorrent, if it's big on Netflix, we wanted it for StreamCo in Australia," Sneesby told us this morning. Those are the two big competitors for Stan in the local market, as Netflix gears up to launch the Australian version of its popular streaming service in the next few months.

Update: CEO of Stan, Mike Sneesby, has told us that the service will support 1080p HD streaming.

Stan will likely cost less than $10 per month in the Australian market, and will be sold without a contract and without ads. If you're a Stan customer, you'll get unlimited, ad-free access for about as much as you're paying for a grey-market Netflix product right now.

The CEO added that he's not concerned about so-called competition from the likes of Quickflix or Foxtel's Presto, saying that those aren't true streaming-video-on-demand services.

Right now there are around 200,000 people in Australia using Netflix before its official Australian launch, and probably even more getting access to content via BitTorrent. Sneesby said that he'll be working on a massive marketing and education campaign in the next few months to fire Australians up about their new streaming service.

The Stan sign-up page went live today, and over the next few months you can expect to see TV and outdoor campaigns starring Rebel Wilson which will form part of that marketing and education campaign.

As far as platforms are concerned, Sneesby told us that Stan will be available on Android and iOS smartphones and tablets, as well as on Chromecast. An Apple TV app is on the way, but until then it'll be the only streaming video service compatible with Apple AirPlay.

Would you use Stan? Yes? No? Tell us in the comments!


It's Official: Netflix To Launch In Australia And New Zealand In March 2015

After months of maybes and maybe nots, Netflix officially announced today that it’s “heading down under”. It will also stream high-def content to Aussies and Kiwis, and even offer “4K [content] where available”.

WATCH MORE: Entertainment News


    $10/month? If everything else about it is as good as torrenting I'll probably use it: convenience, range, quality, release date --- they all have to be gold standard.

    Give me an XBMC plugin, HD, 5.1 audio and I'm there. Otherwise, why bother.

    Just get me GoT for $10 a month and I'm sold. That's all I want! Please!!!!!!

    Seems like the ultimate 'singular' solution is likely to be a steambox-type solution where subscribed 'channels' like Netflix etc. are managed using one interface. We need to stop thinking of Hulu, Netflix, Youtube etc. as separate services and treat them like managed 'apps.'

    I got Netflix through a proxy service around 3 months ago, since then I have significantly reduced my torrenting, although my bandwidth usage has doubled!

    If it was as good quality or better than a scene rip, had no ads whatsoever and a deep enough and regularly updated catalogue I might subscribe. Hopefully they allow for at least 2 or 3 concurrent logins.

    No console or smart TV apps, no care. I don't watch my media on poxy little 8" screens

      You don't have an old laptop or similar plugged into your TV?

      Nor is your TV connected to your network via its own ethernet port?

      You also don't have a decent sized monitor?

      Stop living in 1995.

        Because your SNES had Netflix, Hulu, Plex, DLNA, etc built in with a free to air tuner and HDMI in for pay TV? Shit your 1995 was crazy. I'll stick with my Xbox One. Guessing if you don't associate consoles with being awesome media players, you bought a PS4.

        My decent size monitor is a 65" 4k TV. Sucks to watching a movie or TV show on my 27" at a desk.

        You can't watch everything by voice or remote, full screen without dicking around with programs, remote streaming streaming, etc on a big screen with surround sound? You need to come to the present. Sounds like you're living in the past.

        Last edited 05/11/14 5:40 pm

          I stream from my computer to my tv, or watch recorded stuff off my NAS disks. In other words, there's nothing I can't watch on my tv.

          No, I don't own (and never have owned) a PS1/2/3/4.

          Only one of us is avoiding new technology because his tv/network can't handle it. Which one of us is stuck in the past?

          Last edited 19/11/14 12:35 am

            Not the one with a 65" 4k TV, XB1 running Netflix and Hulu, and a 12tb windows server next to it running plex. Why would I ever want to use a mouse and keyboard to navigate some website on my TV, when a good setup does it all by voice?

            Last edited 19/11/14 7:45 am

              You're the one who can only watch Stan on a 'poxy little 8" screen'.

              Last edited 19/11/14 12:17 pm

                No, I'm the one that wont bother trying it until there are apps for TV devices, not just computers and tablets which are the worst viewing experience.

    "With all this research and an industry-leading Mr Fix It..."

    I think they could have hired a brain dead chimpanzee and it would have it figured this one out quicker.

    I am a pirate, and oddly looking to get out of the pirate market and have a legit service. If you can tell me that I can stream all shows in HD immediately after it has aired on the USA and have shows like Game of Thrones, Walking Dead and many others as quick as what even Torrents are then you can have my money. Hell you can have $20 if you like I'm fine with that, but as long as you live upto it.

    Might have to crank out the guide on how to Run Android Apps in Chrome...

    Urgh, I don't have the time to write this as eloquently as I would like...

    Surely the core issue with all of these services is due to the locking down of 'exclusive' content. Perhaps if the way forward will be through streaming the way this is managed by Australian Copyright and the rights holders needs a serious shakeup.

    It would be great to see that no one service was ever allowed to hold exclusive rights to content.

    Consider something like internet service providers. They pretty much offer the same thing, yet competition still exists between them and they co-exist.

    Wow so many new providers launching - this space is going to become even more crowded, add Stan to the list:

    Errr ... brought to you by Nine ... the people who had a decent(ish) (for Australia) streaming / catchup platform when then launched it as 'Fixplay', but I notice have progressively hobbled it. Hell, I've got all 3 seasons of The Inbetweeners from ripping it from there (took ages to find a ripper that would work with stupid Silverlight).

    So if Fixplay is anything to go by, this will be OK for launch but content will gradually drop off.

    Last edited 05/11/14 5:58 pm

    I happily pay Spotify for all (i.e. huge range) the ad-free music I can handle and lots (i.e. too much) new stuff that comes in each week. It works on my windows pc, my android phone, and my apple ipod.
    I would happily pay Stan (or anyone else) for all the tv and movies I could handle if it comes ad-free with a huge range and has new stuff each week and works on my pc, phone, ipod.
    Does it?

    So I kind of doubt it will have the diversity of content that Netflix has - they spend a lot of money tying up those content deals for a subscriber base of 29 million. For the record, that's 6 million more subscribers than the ENTIRE POPULATION OF AUSTRALIA.

    Better to piggyback on Netflix bargaining clout. Having said that, Amazon's Instant Video is pretty compelling with some good original shows and IMO better movie selections than Netflix. Amazon Prime costs $99 per year, which works out about the same as Netflix. And yes, it works with (the entirely legal) Getflix.

    So they will offer 1080p, but will they charge extra for it like most other services? At least Nexflix is 1080p & 5.1 for all. Granted not all shows are not in either, but at least you dont have to pay extra if it is

    what I wan't to know are they going to do a deal with the service providers because the real reason things like netflix works in the states and not here is they don't pay per gig they pay for speed. So can we get uncapped downloads on stan

    Better call Saul!

    that privacy policy is shit house
    it goes on to say they will send you direct marketing. they will hand over your details to overseas companies. OMG this is the worst!

    If its a free service then sure. SPAM AWAY but it isnt. It's a paid service!

    For 10 measly bucks, I'm all for it!! People spend more than that just on breakfasts at McDonald's everyday. It's great to see and high time for Australia to be finally moving on to the 21st Century.

    Will 5tan be showing old TV series and movies as well, like from the 50's onwards? Also will they have a 'adult only' or rated R section?

    I have the internet speed, around 85mbps, I have the data limit, 500gb on peak and 500gb off peak. What Stan does not have, is 4k content. Netflix US does, But whether the Australian version does when its released is a different story. Only time will tell I guess.

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