Can 10 All Access compete in the streaming wars?

When Network 10 went into administration in mid-2017 reports emerged CBS was circling an acquisition, with particular interest in launching a localised version of its streaming platform CBS All Access.

Fast forward to three years later, what do we make of 10 All Access, which launched in December 2018?

Stacked side by side against Netflix, Stan, Amazon Prime and even newcomers Disney+ and Apple TV+, its offering in original content is meagre at best.

While other platforms are adding new originals every month (and some every week), 10 All Access could only confirm 2 new titles for 2020.

First-run original titles on 10 All Access:

  • Tooning Out The News (2020)
  • Interrogation (2020)
  • Tell Me A Story
  • The Twilight Zone
  • Strange Angel
  • One Dollar
  • Why Women Kill

While the platform only carries Network 10 and CBS content, it is unfortunate deals were already in place for Star Trek: Discovery with Netflix and The Good Fight with SBS (the latter screens on 10AA later). Not even Star Trek: Picard, which was commissioned for CBS All Access, was used as a subscriber drawcard -sold to Amazon Prime in Australia.

At $9.99 a month (with a free 30 day trial), 10 All Access is dominated by 10 and CBS archival seasons such as NCIS, Survivor, The Bachelor, 90210, Celebrity Name Game, Five Bedrooms, Gunsmoke, Jamie Oliver, Neighbours and SEAL Team.

During the pandemic both viewing and subscription has lifted with streams up 54% in March, and new subscriptions at their best ever month (numbers were not disclosed).

But some observers think 10 All Access is struggling in a competitive market.

TV historian Andrew Mercado said, “10 All Access is a complete mystery to me. They have barely any original titles, with no buzz, and their advertising push is about paying $10 a month to watch every episode of NCIS ad-free. Seriously? 10Play has more interesting content and costs nothing! Is 10 All Access deliberately meant to fail as some sort of tax-write off?”

“You have to bring your A-game or you risk becoming irrelevant.”

TV critic Colin Vickery said, “The battle between streaming services is even more competitive than free-to-air. When you have Netflix rolling out smashes like Tiger King plus quality content from Foxtel and Stan and the introduction of Disney+ in tight economic circumstances you have to bring your A-game or you risk becoming irrelevant.”

James Manning, Editor at Mediaweek, added, “With just eight originals on the platform there is very little reason to subscribe for most people. I definitely have the feeling that, despite claims from the company otherwise, streaming is not a priority at present (even moreso after the impact of COVID-19).  The company is reporting its latest results next week and maybe that will shed some light as to where it is going with All Access.”

“We are regularly adding new content to our library”

But 10 All Access spokesperson disagreed, noting Q1 marked its most watched quarter to date.

“We are regularly adding new content to our library. With over 10,000 episodes on the platform including classics, originals and favourites from Australia and around the world ready to be binged, 10 All Access provides great value for its subscribers,” they said.

27 Comments:

  1. They should have merged it with 10Play.
    Gives them an expanded user base and gives people the option of “unlocking” extra titles with a “10Play All-Access” subscription.
    Once you’ve paid – no ads on any 10Play content plus you get the extra titles.

    It also should be priced the same as Prime Video, $6.99.
    Their library is closer to Prime value than Netflix/Stan.

  2. All Access is CBS play for global streaming distribution competing against Netflix, Time Warner, NBC/universal, Apple and Disney for the long term. As CBS was forced into an Australian presence, to protect the book value of their output deal with Ten, they started a local version.

    CBs’s only costs are running a server (which they are for Tenplay heir BVOD and catch-up service), billing and some promotion. They own all the content and have the option of airing on 10,11 or 12, Tenplay BVOD, All Access SVOD or selling it to others e.g. Pichard to Amazon. They are experimenting (Elementary on Ten, Tenplay and ad free on All Access) to see what consumers want.

    So it makes sense for CBS, but is not good value for consumers compared to the others, but everyone is loss-leading to buy market share for the future at the moment. Households will pay for 3 or 4 streaming services for…

  3. Watching old seasons of Survivor (missed quite a few when they first came out) is great, but $10 a month is really expensive.

    Plus, we have 100Mb speeds (fibre to the house) and the website is such a slow and clunky mess in peak hours that it’s unwatchable.

    They’ve clearly not assigned much bandwidth to the site, it’s a poor poor user experience, which means the $10 a month seems even more like a rip off.

    Make content available, for a reasonable price, with a good user experience, and you’ll be rolling in money. Get any of that wrong, and there are other means to access content.

    • In the past Channel 10 were inconsistent providing a satisfactory streaming service (possibly because of the built in TV app) but on AppleTV 4K 10 play does appear to work reasonably well.

  4. I don’t know a single person who has 10 All Access. They should just roll out there original back catalogue, such as, Rove Live, their Big Brother run, The Panel (providing they have the rights to them),

  5. TasTVcameraman

    I am surprised that 10 dont offer Rush, that is on Amazon along with Rescue Special Ops, Water Rats, and Blue Heelers. I tried it for a while but I would like to see Neighbours from year 1, I only started watching itabout 22 years ago when I was forced to stay at home much like now.

  6. I’ve found 10AA worthwhile to finish many series like Madame Secretary, H5-0, Elementary, Seal Team, FBI and Nancy Drew without waiting for them to turn up on 10. I probably won’t keep it long term but I’m finding enough on there at the moment.

  7. While the content is good it’s overpriced. The app is horrible and hardly works. Stick with Amazon Prime Video which is only $3.99 via iTunes!

  8. I still cannot believe that almost a year after release, there is no worthwhile content that wasn’t there on launch. I’d justify it if they had new episodes of Good Fight – but after I watched Sabrina for nostalgia during my free month cancelled. A pointless streaming.

    Also, when your current content can be viewed on 10play – what’s the point?

  9. I know I say this all the time but 10play and 10 All Access need PS4 apps. They also need a monthly subscription fee that is value for money compared to the other services. $10 a month is too much.

  10. chivasssimo

    I think 10AA is waiting for the end of the Showtime deal with Stan, and then we may see that content move over. I’ve heard that there is about a year left on that deal. At the moment, it seems the main appeal is watching catch up shows ad free – but you would really have to hate ads that much to pay more per month than other (better) services!

  11. I’ve used 10 all access during its trial period and currently subscribe to cbs all access. 10 all access is a white label of cbs all access. I imagine therefore that the costs to run are pretty low compared to if they built up the platform for Australia only from scratch. It would be interesting to hear from the platform manager about what the strategy and economics of it are.

  12. What Ten need to do is to cut the cost of running there own service and decide to go with Stan or Prime Video, as we know they are currently struggling with cost atm. by doing a deal with a more established brand that doesn’t conk out on you when loading the web browser application all of the time. By the way 7plus and 9now are free that don’t have the loading issues of 10allaccess does.

  13. I have mentioned this before, but the targeted advertising I received for 10 All Access was trying to lure me with Sabrina The Teenage Witch (the 90s series, not the “Chilling” series currently on Netflix) as well as some other old 90s show that had a reboot in the pipeline which left me scratching my head.

    Somebody at 10 HQ was paid to produce an ad that featured Sabrina The Teenage Witch in an attempt to make their joke of a streaming service look attractive. Absolutely unbelievable. I am still speechless. I’m not interested in 10AA if it were Free let alone paying them the same as what I could be paying to subscribe to any number of superlatively superior services currently out there.

  14. mateo_mathieu

    Ohhh, the original series of Melrose Place! I was waiting for either Stan or Netflix to release it, but now I know why 🙂 Does CBS All Access have captions?

  15. I tried All Access last year and cancelled before the end of the free trial, it was the lack of content, the fact it wouldn’t even play at times and crashed constantly and during my trial was when it was announced that Picard wasn’t even going to be on there in Australia was the last straw

  16. They still continue to push the 10,000 episodes angle as a positive thing. But when you have like 20 seasons each of Survivor and NCIS, of course you’ll have have lots of episodes. But take away those long running shows and you’ve got nothing. People don’t want episodes, the want programs.
    I’d only sign up to 10AA If they had every season of Neighbours from season one onwards. I’d like to watch that from the beginning.

  17. boy_wonder

    I grew up watching 10 so if they had the complete series of all the old soaps (E Street, Richmond Hill, Neighbours, Number 96) I would definitely sign up.

    • That’s actually not a bad idea @boy_wonder. I’d consider $10 a month for a bit of nostagia. Btw – does 10AA have current 10 titles (ie: current series of Masterchef) available without ads?

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