Britbox - british brilliance or bloomin’ broken?

We’ve had Netflix, we’ve had Hulu, we’ve had Amazon Prime Video - all streaming services that deliver video all across the world to people. But here in Britain, the home of ingenuity and innovation, we thought we could do one better.

The end result was BritBox. It’s a creation that promises to take you back to the golden age of telly - Doctor Who, Life on Mars, and a collection of soaps. But is it what everyone hopes it’ll be, or is it just a flop?

The Basics

So let’s cover the basics first. BritBox is a streaming service designed to rival the likes of Netflix and Sky. For £5.99 a month, and with a trial month thrown in for free, this is pretty middle of the road when it comes to streaming prices. Some people have raised the correct observation that this could just as easily be thrown in as part of the cost of the TV licence that many have in Britain, but there we are.

The service combines shows from all of your favourite providers. You’ve got the best of BBC and ITV, - it’s a Who’s Who of British TV stations and this helps it appeal to a lot of people.

Functionality Not Included

One of the major let downs of the service is that it came without all the bells and whistles. Closed-caption subtitling, downloadable functionality, smart preferences - these all just didn’t appear when the system first came out. New updates were promised and for the most part seemed to deliver, but you do get the feeling that this was launched in a rush.

The service has apps on most major mobile platforms and there is, of course, the Smartphone version. Connection is pretty stable, and the overall quality is good, but you have to let it warm up like an old motor car and buffer for a few seconds first.

Ending on a High Note

Now, we’re not just bashing this for the sake of it. There is genuinely a lot to appreciate here. You can see shows that aren’t available anywhere else without having to fork out £40 a time to buy the box sets online.

There’s stuff like Classic Doctor Who, which spans from William Hartnell to the cancellation of the show during the tenure of Sylvester McCoy. It’s worth mentioning simply because the BBC themselves have guarded Classic Who for the longest time. For fans of British TV, this is simply a non-negotiable service, because you get everything you could want.

Closing Thought

What do we think? Well, BritBox has a lot of potential. It’s a highly engaging and incredibly versatile service that gives you all you could want of British telly for a reasonable price.

Sadly, until the whole service updates a little more, you won’t necessarily get the same fun that you might from Netflix. It’s a very good system, but one which needs a polish to really stand out. But hey, we really enjoyed it, and seeing all those shows from years ago? Well worth the subscription price.
 

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