Netflix announces launch date and new partner

James McGrath
By James McGrath | 3 March 2015

Netflix will start streaming in Australia and New Zealand on 24 March, and will go uncapped on iiNet home internet plans.

The global streaming giant put months of speculation to rest this morning by announcing the launch date of the subscription video on demand (SVOD) platform, and the content line-up will include all three seasons of House of Cards, despite speculation to the contrary.

It was thought that because of a deal struck with Foxtel, Netflix would not be able to show the key program, as Foxtel held the Australian rights to the show.

It has struck a deal with iiNet for downloads to go unmetered while on the internet service provider, calling it “the first unmetering agreement announced with a major broadband provider in Australia”.

Presto, the SVOD joint venture between Seven West Media and Foxtel had previously announced that the service would go unmetered on the yet-to-be launched Foxtel broadband service.

Optus also confirmed to AdNews this morning that customers will be able to access Netflix content without the data coming off their download limits.

"Optus looks forward to the Australian launch of Netflix and is delighted to be part of this exciting entertainment revolution," a spokesperson said. "Optus consumer broadband customers will be able to access as much Netflix content as they want, without metering. Any Netflix Australian content will not count towards a customer’s data cap."

Netflix will come in-built into smart TVs manufactured by Samsung, LG, Sony, Panasonic, Phillips and Hisense.

It will also be available across a wide variety of game consoles, with it striking a deal with Microsoft to include three months of free access when customers buy a new Xbox One console.

While pricing for Netflix has not yet been announced, it said that there will be a three-tier pricing plan.

There will be a single-stream standard definition plan, a two-stream high definition plan, and a four-stream 4K Ultra-HD plan.

Interestingly, it also announced that Vodafone mobile users who sign up in New Zealand would receive “several months” of pre-paid service, mirroring a move made by rival SVOD platform Stan in Australia.

It will bring several original series to Australia including Bloodlines, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, and Marco Polo and also recently signed a SVOD content deal with Disney to show the likes of Frozen, Lucasarts content, and Marvel studio content.

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