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Netflix a ‘bad idea for Aussie consumers’

An Australian price comparison website is urging consumers to think twice before signing up to Netflix or other local SVOD competitors.

Netflix original Marco Polo

Netflix original Marco Polo

Finder.com.au has warned acquiring Netflix could be a “bad idea” and that consumers should “do their research and understand all the necessary considerations before buying Netflix and other internet TV providers”.

Launching a comprehensive attack on Netflix, Finder warned the platform would not offer shows such as Breaking Bad, Sons of Anarchy and The Walking Dead, which are available on the original US version of the service. It also noted pay TV platform Foxtel has rights to HBO’s Game of Thrones until the end of its run.

Finder also said SVOD services could damage the Australian TV and film industries.

“If fewer Aussie eyeballs are on traditional TV, the stations will struggle to compete with licensing and potentially close up shop for good. This could limit the opportunities that Australia’s entertainers have, including other talented people in direction, production, writers and filmmakers,” according to Finder’s money expert Michelle Hutchinson.

She also warned consumers would often find they were not provided with enough data to download and may need to switch to ‘unlimited’ plans.

Finder also criticised Netflix’s pricing plan, which in Australia is A$8.99 (US$7.05) a month.

“As our analysis shows, there’s much more to Netflix than meets the eye,” said Hutchison. “While, at first glance, a cheap monthly rate may appear to win you over, I urge you to factor in the finer details to ensure you’re making a considered decision and not just jumping on the Netflix bandwagon.”

Netflix launched on March 24 and is expected to gain a solid foothold in the Australian market after stocking up on its local content library, though it is facing competition from Presto TV, Stan and Quickflix.

Netflix declined to comment.