Australian VOD service folds
Australian video-on-demand and electronic-sell-through service EzyFlix.tv has shut down.
Launched two years ago by Access Digital Entertainment, the online retailer seems to be a victim of the burgeoning popularity of Netflix and other streaming services.
In a notice posted on the EzyFlix website, Access Digital Entertainment said it had “decided to end the service offered on this site. If you have rented or purchased any movies or TV shows, these movies are no longer available on EzyFlix.”
EzyFlix had licensing deals with all the major Hollywood studios except MGM and with Roadshow Entertainment and the ABC. It was competing with iTunes, Telstra’s BigPond Movies, Foxtel On Demand, Google Play and Fetch TV, which recently launched an electronic sell-through component.
Unlike its Australian rivals, the service enabled consumers to buy and redeem UltraViolet-enabled titles, and it was the first to offer Digital HD.
Last December it discounted the price of a range of movies including Guardians of the Galaxy, Transformers: Age of Extinction and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes tor $16.99, which was up to 33% cheaper than iTunes and Google Play. At that time Access Digital Entertainment CEO Craig White told IF the company was experiencing strong growth both in online rentals and download-to-own.
In the past six months it's likely that EzyFlix's "message" was drowned out by all the media noise and consumer attention on the launch of Netflix and its battles with Stan and Presto.
According to Roy Morgan Research, Netflix reached 737,000 subscribers in July, continuing a rapid growth trend from 419,000 in May and 571,000 in June,
Tim Martin, general manager – media, Roy Morgan Research, said: In just four months, Netflix has expanded the total market up to over a third of all homes. So far, it appears Foxtel hasn’t been damaged by the arrival of Netflix. It may turn out to be that the two are not direct competitors after all: Foxtel subscribers will view Netflix as an add-on provider, and non-subscribers were never going to get Foxtel anyway.
“For many years prior to the arrival of Netflix, total uptake of pay or subscription television had remained steadily in the region of 25-30% of households, unable to break through to a wider audience. Clearly, there was plenty of space for the market to grow.”