FIRST REVIEW: Stan Described As “Not Good” As Nine Struggle To Get Traction
A product of StreamCo, Stan is a joint venture between Nine Entertainment Co. and Fairfax Media.
Ironically Nine Entertainment chose to ignore content service reviewers, instead they chose a mix of people who had registered for the service to pass an opinion. One of the people who got an invite was Mumbrella editor Alex Hayes, he said that his initial initial impressions were not good.
He said “I signed up on my work Mac, only to be told Stan isn’t supported on Google Chrome on Macs, one of the bigger browsers. And when I tried to get it to load in Safari it loaded with glacial speed. Not a promising start”.
The problem for the Stan streaming service, that has cost Stream Co over $65M in establishment fees, is that they have a very limited Window to get their act together before Netflix who already have 50 million subscribers land on Australian shores with a $10 a month service and significantly more content than the new Stan service.
Hayes said that the layout of the site seems fairly straightforward, and intuitive. When you log-in there’s a feature carousel at the top plugging some of the top content, with other shows and movies sorted into genres underneath.
He claimed that a back catalogue of James Bond films was some of its “best exclusive content”
The Stan back catalogue, features a lot of former Nine Network shows as well as British and US shows like Sherlock, Ray Donovan, as well as Danish cop drama The Bridge.
Stan offers a function to create restricted profiles, for either kids under 12 or by classification – but it doesn’t have the handy kids’ button on the home screen to get straight to that section that Netflix does, and requires a little more fiddly navigation from a main account through the pull-out menu Hayes claimed.
When using a Google Chromecast device, hooked it up to the tele, Hayes noticed a responsive streaming function, similar to Netflix, which takes into account your internet connection and streams in high definition, higher-standard definition or standard definition. A handy function with Australia’s fluctuating internet speeds.
However, when I came to try to cast the next episode to the TV it wouldn’t play ball – although I can’t say whether that’s a fault of Stan, Chromecast or a slightly crappy internet connection.
Other problems he identified was that when he linked his Bluetooth speaker the service assumed I was trying to air cast to another device, and froze the picture on his iPad screen.
Stan has the exclusive Australian streaming rights to Breaking Bad spin-off show Better Call Saul when the show debuts in February, as well as streaming rights for all five seasons of Breaking Bad itself.
Also on Stan’s list of exclusive shows are Mozart in the Jungle, and the Golden Globe-winning hit new show, Transparent.
According to Stan CEO Mike Sneesby, all three shows will remain exclusive to the Stan streaming service for as long as they’re produced.
A multi-year content licensing agreement with Viacom International Media Networks means that Stan users will have access to shows from Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., Comedy Central and MTV.
Stan will also provide many of the kids shows that the ABC is renowned for, including Aussie shows like The Wiggles, Dorothy the Dinosaur, Guess How Much I Love You and Justine Clarke, as well as content from ABC’s library of overseas shows such as Octonauts, Angelina Ballerina, Bob the Builder, Thomas and Friends, Fireman Sam, Sesame Street and Mister Maker.