If like me, you loved streaming service Presto, you would know that as of February 1st the streaming service has permanently closed and we now have no choice but to embrace the Foxtel Play service. I was hesitant at first, I loved Presto so much, it offered a rich and diverse library of movie and television content that Netflix and Stan both couldn’t provide. It gave me weekly episodes of The Mindy Project and Scandal direct from the U.S. along with those Summer Bay specials from Home & Away that I definitely didn’t watch, despite not having watched the show for several years.
When the news dropped late last year that Presto would close down, I was devastated. One of the reasons I let go of my Hulu account was due to these fast track programs that Australia has surprisingly started keeping up with. The deal with The CW see’s shows like Frequency, No Tomorrow and Riverdale bringing weekly episodes to Netflix so I no longer needed it for that either. There was just one giant beast left, my CW Arrow-verse shows. I didn’t want to download them as I enjoyed paying to see them and happy for this to happen, so imagine my surprise when Fox 8 offered all of my superhero shows direct from the USA as well as being available On Demand for a few weeks after.
As I flicked through the TV Guide for Foxtel Play I noticed that the quality of content and repeated programs was significantly less than the last time I had Foxtel (7 years ago!) and while this did surprise me, it also impressed me. Now I will say upfront that I am not being paid by Foxtel or Presto for this article, I am also not receiving Foxtel Play free of charge or on a media account or anything, I am a full fare customer.
There are a ton of reality shows on here that are really niche interest like the Great British Bake Off and the British Sewing Bee which sound incredibly absurd but are actually entertaining and don’t get me started on my weekend binge of Mariah’s World and Revenge Body with Khloe Kardashian.
Movies wise we have some heavy hitters with Batman Vs Superman : Dawn Of Justice and Captain America Civil War both available as well as Hugh Jackman in the underrated Eddie The Eagle and The Huntsman : Winter’s War. The best thing is being On Demand the Netflix style of watch when you want uninterrupted with no ads really sells the service to me.
Foxtel Play surprised me with its broad range of TV shows that you simply cannot access anywhere else in Australia as well a some great reality TV and superhero CW shows that are express from the U.S. and also available to watch anytime.
If you are concerned about losing Presto and are as distressed as we are, Foxtel Play is offering a great 14 day free trial and then a $15 a month sign up fee for the transition. Having used it now for 7 days straight I can honestly say that Foxtel Play is a big step up for the cable giant that could have easily dwindled away when Netflix and Stan entered the market. If you have had Foxtel before and are hesitant about diving back in, don’t be. Gone are the days of everything being repeated 5 times a day and you can also watch on phones, tablets, gaming consoles and other devices (everything except Apple TV for some reason?)