Quickflix movies to stream to PS3


news DVD rental outfit Quickflix today revealed it had signed a deal with Sony to allow streaming of its nascent video on demand platform to the Japanese manufacturer’s PlayStation 3 platform.

Quickflix launched its movie download service in mid-2009. However, the platform is not believed to have made much traction in the Australian marketplace, unlike comparable services from companies like Netflix in the US. Part of the reason is that the service has not had the range offered by other platforms. However, its availability is also difficult to find through Quickflix’s web site, which is still focused on the DVD mailout model. The PS3 deal comes after Quickflix announced a similar arrangement for movie streaming through Sony’s Bravia line of TVs in July.

“Over 1.3 million Australian consumers who own an internet connectable PlayStation 3 will have access to Quickflix’s on demand movie streaming service. This is a significant moment in the evolution of IPTV delivered entertainment in Australia and a major development for our company,” said Quickflix chief executive Chris Taylor ina statement.

The company’s statement said in the US and UK, the PlayStation 3 was the platform of choice for over 30 percent of movie streaming activity by the “leading online movie subscription providers” in those countries.

Quickflix said its movie streaming service on PS3 would provide “unlimited viewing of movies” from “a constantly changing catalogue”, complementing its DVD rental service. “Combined with our rapidly growing DVD-by-mail business the PlayStation 3 deal strategically positions Quickflix to become the most popular movie streaming service in Australia,” Langsford said.

Sony Computer Entertainment Australia & New Zealand Managing Director Michael Ephraim said: “This exciting agreement with Quickflix will further enhance PS3’s already strong entertainment on demand credentials across TV, games, music and now, an even larger range of movie options. If you love games, and your family loves movies, quite simply there is no better choice of device for your home than PlayStation 3, which is also one of the most highly awarded Blu-Ray players.”

Well, this is a bit of a joke, really, isn’t it?

I can’t even find Quickflix’s movie streaming service details on its website — not even basic information such as how much it costs, what platforms it’s available on, what the range of titles is and so on. And I know how to navigate the website — I’m a long-time Quickflix customer myself and get a couple of DVDs a week from the service.

Secondly, Langsford’s claim that Quickflix will become the most popular movie streaming service in Australia is also laughable. I would say that right now that claim squarely belongs to Telstra’s T-Box platform, limited though it is, with the FetchTV platform being marketed by iiNet, Internode and Adam Internet (and eventually, we assume, Optus) coming up in second place.

Even Microsoft’s Zune video streaming service — which operates through the company’s Xbox 360 console — is likely way ahead of Quickflix’s movie streaming service at this point, limited though the Microsoft offering is. I’ve rented videos through it occasionally. It’s not terrible. But it’s not great, either. Apple’s iTunes video purchase service is probably in there somewhere as well — I’ve downloaded a few Game of Thrones episodes there. It’s pretty good, for what it is, although it’s not technically a streaming platform.

Of course, by far the most popular online video service in Australia is BitTorrent. Why? Although the platform is completely illegal, it still offers you to get what you want, when you want it. It’s for this simple reason that Australians pirate more content per capita than almost any other nation on earth.

It’s simply laughable that while small deals like this one between Quickflix and Sony are being signed, in the US, companies like Netflix are trying to dump the DVD rental model altogether. In Australia, as Langford recently stated at Quickflix’s annual results session, DVD rental — physical, optical media — is still going strong. Hilarious!

Image credit: Quickflix


  1. Slightly snarky there Renai?

    I would think negotiating rights to stream would be a nightmare. Unlike the US QuickFlix will have to negotiate with FOXTel and thr FreeView Channels, especially if they have streaming rights through their services.

    • I’m tired of Australia having no decent movie streaming options. I watch a lot of DVDs and it shits me every time I can’t get what I want, when I want it.

      • I did investigate this. This is where Piracy is not a crime and in fact a competitor to the legal providers.

        No one provides freedom to watch what you like when you like. And you will be surprised on the streaming options available.

        The best player is Apple, followed by Telstra. Both lock you in to savage DRM (though you can do more with iTunes Fairplay).

        Part of the problem is everyone is getting into streaming. The Freeview alliance and Foxtel are the worst offender as they hold local rights to much of the TV content, and they see streaming as a competitor.

        Until we can decouple content to delivery, australia will suck in media. Because there is too much money locked up in legacy systems and companies are too conservative to do something sensible (that is, do not care about delivery).

        Piracy will always win the day in range, device choice, flexability and price.

  2. Let’s not forget we’re in the exact same scenario with music. Americans have Spotify and Rhapsody (to name but two services), whereas we get the occasional announcement of some joke service with half a CD worth of titles that streams under limited conditions.
    There is a recurring theme here.

  3. Don’t forget this will be non-provider specific, wherein with T-Box or Fetch you need to be with a specific ISP.

    Also I read the same press release as you did, you’re rushing them a bit if you expect something on the website straight away :)

  4. Well … Quickflix has never had a streaming service, that’s why you can’t find any info. That 2009 launch you referred to? It was a Warner Brothers initiative that Quickflix linked out to, from their site. I linked to it as well from APPLEBOX, as did Blockbuster, EzyDVD, Network Video and Bigdpond. You’ll find my comments on that here: http://applebox.com.au/blog/2009/06/go-on-press-the-download-link/

    Re Netflix trying to dump their DVD model altogether .. that’s hilarous! Where did you get that from?? It couldn’t be further from the truth.

  5. Hi Renai,

    Quickflix has just announced the deal Sony Playstation 3….we’re targeting to go live before Christmas, this year so not long to wait. We’ll be making other announcements about our upcoming streaming service very soon, so please stay tuned. Our DVD rental business is growing very strongly so we’ll continue to support that and launch streaming which we think will make a great combination and have demand in the marketplace. This is actually a big deal for Quickflix because it means our streaming service will be accessible for the many of the 1.3 million Sony PS3 customers in Australia who have linked their device to the internet and their TV. We’re delighted with the reaction of PS3 owners already and ofcourse our aim is to make streaming service available on other devices as well…watch this space.

    Kind regards

    Stephen Langsford

    • hey Stephen,

      I appreciate your comment — thanks for responding :)

      However, frankly, I must question Quickflix’s implementation of its strategy here. How hard can it be, after all, to get your streaming service working on PCs, tablets, mobile phones and other media centres, if you are able to get it working on the PS3? And there’s also the fact that the original movie streaming service was ‘launched’ two years ago.

      I’m glad you guys are working on the streaming issue as an evolution of the DVD rental business. Australia needs this desperately. However, your progress at the moment appears to be woefully slow.



  6. Hi Renai,

    Thanks for the opportunity to reply! A point of clarification– along with others a couple of years ago we participated in what was a first for Warner Bros in Australia being a download to own or rent (to PC).

    The launch of Quickflix streaming service is very imminent. You’re right– customers will also want to access Quickflix streaming through PC’s and all those other devices and we’re determined to accomodate them.

    Yes relative to US the Australian market has been slower to introduce the services that we’re about to but Quickflix is doing the work and making the investment to deliver on proven models so you’ll see things speed up pretty quickly hereon. In the meantime we have an online DVD rental service that is bigger and better than ever…and with streaming better still.


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