Free streaming services that actually have good content

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Free streaming services that actually have good content

Words by Kate Streader

Because you really don’t need to be paying for four different streaming subscriptions.

If you’ve found yourself out of things to watch and are contemplating signing up for yet another streaming subscription for the sake of variety, we have some good news for you. There are a bunch of free streaming platforms you may not know about that are stacked with awesome content certain to keep you entertained. Here are some of our favourites.

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SBS On Demand

SBS On Demand truly is the unsung hero of streaming platforms. It has a huge selection of independent and world films, intriguing documentaries and irreverent tv series that will appeal to viewers whose taste is a little off-kilter. There are old classics like The X-Files and The Joy of Painting With Bob Ross, docos exploring everything from Tinder to medical marijuana and a bunch of other stuff you won’t find on any other platforms. Plus, it’s your one-stop-shop for all of the SBS channels and their various original programs.

ABC iView

If you like Aussie and British humour, ABC iView’s selection will be right up your alley. There’s Shaun Micallef’s MAD AS HELLHard Quiz, a bunch of stand-up comedy fans, Peep Show, Black Books… The list goes on. They’ve also got a huge offering of documentaries, music and arts content, in-depth news programs and Australian television.


Kanopy is dedicated to “thoughtful entertainment”, so if you’re the type to half-watch Netflix while you scroll through your social media feeds, this probably isn’t the streaming platform for you. But, if you’re into classic films, indie cinema and thought-provoking documentaries, you’ll be in your element here. While it won’t cost you anything to join, you will need a library card to create an account, but they are also free so there’s really nothing stopping you.


The catalogue on Tubi is truly unlike that of any other streaming platform. It’s like Video Ezy meets a YouTube rabbit hole in that it’s full of conspiracy documentaries and old-school films you forgot existed. From films on Bigfoot, aliens and the rapture to so-bad-they’re-good flicks from the ’90s and ’00s, Tubi is the place to go to lose a few hours (or days, depending on how much time and how many brain cells you have to waste).


Like Kanopy, Beamafilm requires you to link your library card in order to access its content for free but hey, it’s a small price to not pay. This is another great service for those who like to watch thoughtful films and documentaries. There’s a huge selection of films and biopics on arts and literature, as well as documentaries exploring politics, Indigenous voices and the Black Lives Matter movement, plus a bunch of indie cinema featuring the likes of Nicolas Cage, Daniel Radcliffe and Robert Pattinson.

Looking for more streaming recommendations? Check out our list of the ten best Australian music documentaries of all time