BritBox Australia: Everything you need to know
Late last year, a new subscription streaming service quietly launched in Australia: BritBox. A joint venture between UK television giants BBC and ITV, BritBox brings a range of both classic and modern British series, not to mention a handful of original programming.
Despite a slow start in the US and Canada, BritBox experienced massive growth during the coronavirus pandemic, with a reported 1.5 million North American subscribers reported in October. Given it arrived at the tail end of lockdowns and border closures in Oz, it will be interesting to see if the BBC and ITV’s $35 million investment in the Australian iteration will pay off.
So, is it actually worth checking out? Find out in our review.
BritBox Australia price
At launch, BritBox is priced at $8.99 per month, or a slightly cheaper $89.99 per year, which happens to be the same pricing structure as Disney Plus. For comparison’s sake, Netflix starts at $10.99, while Stan and Binge will both set you back $10 per month. So far it seems pretty reasonable, but there’s no word yet on just how many titles BritBox Australia has on offer. Of course, there is a seven-day free trial for those not ready to commit without checking out what’s on offer first.
Britbox free trial
Netflix and Disney Plus might’ve done away with their free trials, but Britbox still offers a seven-day trial period for new users. You’ll get full access to the library and will only be charged if you decide to stay subscribed.
BritBox Australia content
As you can probably guess from the name of the streaming service, all the programs on BritBox are – surprise, surprise – British. Basically, if it’s ever been on the BBC or ITV, you’ll probably find it here. Still, the library is quite limited, with just over 200 TV shows and movies available to stream according to JustWatch.
BritBox’s library is split into five genres: Drama, Crime Drama, Comedy, Documentary and Lifestyle.
In the Drama department, you’ll find Poldark, Call the Midwife and the O.G. House of Cards.
If you’re all about those devious small-town English murder mysteries, you’re positively spoilt for choice – Luther, Midsomer Murders, Broadchurch and A Touch of Frost will more than satisfy that crime drama itch.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a UK-centric streaming service without a boatload of dry, sarcastic British comedies. Think Mr. Bean, Fawlty Towers, The Office (UK), Blackadder and the weird and wonderful Mighty Boosh.
It should also come as no surprise that you’ll find a decent chunk of David Attenborough’s doco catalogue on BritBox, including Planet Earth and Blue Planet.
And finally, there’s a bundle of wholesome cooking, gardening, travel and other lifestyle shows, starring the likes of Nigella Lawson, Mary Berry, Paul Hollywood, Rick Stein, Joanna Lumley and more.
At the time of writing, there’s only one BritBox original program (a satirical puppet show called Spitting Image), however the platform reportedly has four new series in the works. Watch this space.
Given its lower-than-average monthly price, it shouldn’t come as a huge surprise that you won’t find any 4K content on BritBox. Well, not yet at least. The best you can get is 1080p (HD), but many older programs are only available in standard definition.
How to stream BritBox
Like most streaming services currently available, you can stream BritBox via their iOS and Android apps, through Apple TV, Chromecast, Telstra TV and Fetch, or from your compatible Samsung or LG smart TV.
Unlike other streaming services, however, BritBox has a generous limit of five simultaneous streams, which is more than every other platform (including premium pricing tiers). Unfortunately, there’s currently no option for offline downloads.
BritBox’s suggested minimum speeds for streaming differ on a couple of factors – namely, what device you’re watching on and the stream quality. If you’re watching on a Smart TV, streaming device like Apple TV, or via a web browser, you’ll need at least 3Mbps down. For those streaming on the iOS or Android app, 1.5Mbps should suffice.
For those wanting to stream HD content, you’ll need a download speed of about 6.5Mbps. BritBox’s support hub also notes that these rates may vary based on overall internet usage, so if you’re in a larger household or live with gamers or other data gluttons, it might be worth investing in an NBN 100 plan.
Here are the most popular Fast NBN plans today.
BritBox vs Netflix vs Stan vs the rest
With Australia’s streaming service playing field becoming increasingly crowded, it’s worth considering which ones are actually worth that monthly fee. Here’s how it stacks up against the competition.
|Service||Monthly price||No. titles||Max. Video Resolution||Devices||Free trial|
|Disney Plus||$11.99||1,888||4K||4||No free trial|
|Binge||$10 – $18||2,080||HD||1 – 4||2 weeks|
|Prime Video||$6.99||10,403||4K||3||30 days|
|Netflix||$10.99 – $19.99||5,836||4K||1 – 4||No free trial|
|Stan||$10 – $19||2,873||4K||1 – 4||30 days|
|Foxtel Now||$25 – $104||3,344||HD||2||10 days|
|Kayo Sports||$25 – $35||Over 50 sports||HD||2 – 3||2 weeks|