New movie-on-demand service Catchplay launched in Singapore

Taiwan-based video-on-demand service Catchplay has launched in Singapore.
Taiwan-based video-on-demand service Catchplay has launched in Singapore.PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM CATCHPLAY.COM.SG

SINGAPORE - A new video-on-demand service specialising in Hollywood and Asian movies has launched in Singapore, giving viewers access to films on mobile phones, tablets and in the living room.

The service, Catchplay, offers two plans: A pay-as-you-go plan with no monthly fee and a $14.90 monthly plan that gives unlimited access to its library of older films.

Catchplay says it has about 500 movies in its library today, with about 100 more added each month.

It also stocks newer titles such as the superhero movie Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice, the comedy How To Be Single and the sci-fi thriller 10 Cloverfield Lane. Such new releases are priced at either $3.50 or $6 per rental.

Catchplay is a Taiwan-based company and launched its video-on-demand service there in March this year, followed by Indonesia in June. Singapore is its third territory of operations, and it has partnered with StarHub to offer the cable service provider's subscribers its content.

Ms Daphne Yang, Catchplay's chief executive, says that for now, her company will specialise in movies, as those seeking television series are well served by other providers.

Her firm sets itself apart from other streaming players such as Netflix, iTunes, Google Play and providers such as Singtel by offering a two-in-one service: An unlimited-use library of older movies, as well as a rental service for newer films.

"Netflix has a subscription service, but it specialises in original content and in TV series... Amazon, iTunes and Google offer standard studio titles, but they don't have the subscription service," she says.

Catchplay also prides itself on its recommendation engine, the ability to switch between viewing devices without interruption, and a library with detailed browsing information.

It has content partnerships with United States-based distributors such as NBC Universal, Paramount and Warner Bros, as well as regional players such as Golden Village, Shaw Organisation, Cathay-Keris Films and mm2. A deal with Disney is expected to be finalised soon.

The Catchplay app can be downloaded for IOS and Android, and for couch viewing, users can use a Chromecast dongle or an AirPlay-enabled device such as an Apple TV attached to a television.

Catchplay is offering a launch special of $12.90 monthly for its Movie Lovers subscription plan, and those who "like" its Facebook page can get a code to redeem two months free subscription. Each user can access Catchplay on a maximum of three devices, with only one log-in allowed at any time.