Published on April 9th, 2015 | by Varuna Singh0
Starz Play online streaming service to launch this month in UAE
Sorry, Netflix is not available in your country yet. A message we’re all too familiar with. A US based streaming service Starz Play is reported to be launched in the region this month, according to The National.
Starz Play hopes to bring un filtered content to the region while being a US based company. We aren’t really sure how this will be regulated, but Starz Play promises 99% of un filtered US content to be available in the region.
Starz Play will provide a healthy competition to ICFLIX which is another streaming service that is based out of the UAE. ICFLIX offers not only “Hollywood” content but also content from the Arab region as well as “Bollywood”. Starz Play on the other hand has only “Hollywood” content, which from initial impressions is more popular and updated.
Starz Play is entering the region with a static price of AED 50 ($14) per month. Starz Play goes head to head with the region’s ICFLIX movie / series on demand service. In comparison an ICFLIX subscription costs you AED 29 which is at a more competitive price. ICFLIX also offers free content without subscription , but that’s more to lure in new customers.
So far, their site starzplay.com has prices in US $ and not in local currency. You can however set up an account and go ahead with the trial. Currently, this service isn’t customized for the region, but Starz Play says it will be this month.
Being a service, once officially available in the region, consumers will not require a VPN to access the content (the use of which is illegal in the UAE)
People out here still rely on pirated ways to be up to date with their favorite movies and TV Shows however with Starz Play in the news, this has a potential to change.
It’s safe to say that customers need to see more content on these services to make the switch. With TV networks like OSN already providing a solid content portfolio, we would like to see ICFLIX and Starz Play offer just that.
We still dream of a heavy entertainment service like Netflix to foray in the Middle-East. While that might not be happening any time soon, Starz Play could be on the verge of just that.
Mohit Jivani contributed to this post