Presto will stop its streaming service in early 2017 following Seven West Media’s decision to sell its 50 percent stake to partner and co-owner Foxtel.
Existing subscribers will be transferred to the Foxtel Play on-demand service, which they will be able to access from December this year, which will be given a new look. “We are delighted to be able to offer Presto subscribers access to the new look Foxtel Play.” Foxtel had previously dismantled its offering of free premium movies to its Platinum customers, switching them over to a free 18-month subscription to Presto that was due to end in early 2017 anyway.
No concrete reasons were given for the switch, but much of it would have to do with Netflix being the dominant player in the online streaming market in Australia, releasing regular day-and-date exclusive content such as Luke Cage, and numerous Netflix original films. Rival service Stan, a partner of Fairfax and Nine Entertainment, has managed to secure a number of exclusive local and international programs of its own, with Presto failing to carve out a significant niche during its run. Presto was effectively Foxtel for all intents and purposes, with the exception of a few properties Seven brought to the party, along with some headliners like Mr. Robot. As such, it’s hardly a surprise that Presto will vanish.
The nature of the content is yet to be announced, but with Foxtel’s numerous deals with US networks Showtime, HBO, CW and of course, Fox, we might see a strong new player on the scene.