At Kotaku Australia we like to whinge about the inflated prices we pay for 'things' as much as the next site. In video game land the differences can be astronomical but, according to consumer advocate group Choice, the situation with television shows is worse. According to a statement released this morning, we're paying 376% more for The Walking Dead compared to people in the US.
According to the statement from Choice, we could be paying a helluva lot more to watch the upcoming season of The Walking Dead compared to our overseas counterparts.
"Australians wanting to watch the upcoming season of Walking Dead will be paying up to 376 per cent more than people watching the same show in the United Kingdom," says CHOICE Chief Executive Alan Kirkland.
But Angus Kidman over at Lifehacker has a pretty convincing takedown of Choice's numbers, arguing that Choice is comparing the cost of buying The Walking Dead, on services like iTunes and Google Play, to the cost of Netflix and NowTV in the US and the UK — which are streaming services. According to Angus, that comparison is a little bit disingenuous and I'd be inclined to agree. Streaming content and buying content are two completely different things — this is why it costs more to 'buy' video content on, say, the PlayStation Store than it does to rent it.
|Title||Cheapest||Netflix (AUD)||Foxtel Home||Foxtel Play||Quickflix||iTunes (AU)||Google Play||NowTV (UK)|
|Orange is the New Black (S2)||$8.56||$8.56||$45.45||$45.00||$39.98||$30.90||$27.26||N/A|
|Walking Dead (S5)||$8.41||N/A||$33.64||$22.73||N/A||$39.99||N/A||$8.41|
However, the problem in Australia is this: we don't have a streaming service like Netflix or NowTV — not officially at least — so what can Choice compare the prices to?
The situation, whichever way you look at it, is grim. We're stuck in the dark ages when it comes to the application of streaming technology and we're therefore being forced to pay these astronomical prices for content. We're forced to use these incredibly outdated business models and that sucks tremendously.