Starzplay Available Through Apple TV in Middle East, North Africa

Starzplay, Starz’s video-on-demand streaming service, is now available to customers across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region through Apple TV channels on the Apple TV app on iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, iPod touch, Mac, and select Samsung and LG smart TVs.

The service offers Hollywood and Arabic movies, TV shows, documentaries, kids’ entertainment and original content. Customers in the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Bahrain, Qatar, Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt can sign up for a seven-day free trial and subscribe directly to Starzplay on the Apple TV app for $11 per month (prices vary by region).

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“Online streaming in the region is growing faster than ever,” Danny Bates, CCO and co-founder at Starzplay, said in a statement. “As the region’s leading video streaming service, we constantly look for innovative avenues to offer quality content to hungry audiences. Offering Starzplay through Apple TV channels will open up a whole new customer base and further drive the growth of the video streaming market in MENA. We are proud to be the first major content partner for Apple TV channels in the MENA region and look forward to unveiling more compelling content on the platform.”

Subscribers through Apple TV channels can watch online on demand or watch offline downloads of on the Apple TV app. With Family Sharing, up to six friends or family members can share subscriptions to Apple TV channels using just their Apple ID and password.

Report: U.S. Leads in Global Piracy Website Visits

Despite being home to the Motion Picture Association of America, Netflix, Hulu and other budget over-the-top video services, the United States leads the world in global visits to websites pirating illegal access to TV shows, movies, music and publishing, according to new data from Muso, a digital analytics firm.

There were 17.3 billion visits by U.S. residents to piracy sites in 2018, followed by Russia with 14.5 billion visits and Brazil with 10.2 billion.

Notably, the report found that nearly 50% of visits were to access TV programming, followed by movies (17%), music (16%), books (11.5%) and software (6%).

“Television is the most popular content for piracy and given the fragmentation of content across multiple streaming services,” co-founder/CEO Andy Chatterley said in a statement. “Whilst it’s important to restrict the distribution of unlicensed content, there is a wealth of insight to be garnered from piracy audience data that gives a comprehensive view of global content consumption.”

Interestingly, London-based Muso found that people engaging in pirated content are shying away from public file-sharing services, with 60% opting instead for unlicensed streaming sites.

“We have seen a 10% increase in people bypassing search engines and going directly to the piracy destination of their choice,” Chatterley said, underscoring how prevalent digital piracy remains globally.

“Simply focusing on take-downs is clearly a whack-a-mole approach and, while an essential part of any content protection strategy, it needs to be paired with more progressive thinking,” he said. “With the right mindsight, piracy audiences can offer huge value to rights holders.”

  1. United States Of America: 17.3 billion
  2. Russian Federation: 14.5 billion
  3. Brazil: 10.3 billion
  4. India: 9.6 billion
  5. France: 7.3 billion
  6. Turkey: 7.3 billion
  7. Ukraine: 6.1 billion
  8. Indonesia: 6 billion
  9. United Kingdom: 5.7 billion
  10. Germany: 5.3 billion