DocPlay vs Netflix: Which Streaming Provider Offers the Best Docos?

Comparison chart of Docplay vs Netflix

There’s nothing more rewarding than finding a great documentary. Closer to reality than any series or film, they more often than not tell stories that even scriptwriters can’t come up with. When we think of streaming the best docos online we often think of Netflix, however, there’s a new player in town called DocPlay. Here we are going to compare the two to see which is the best option for lovers of the real-life narrative.

It can be pretty frustrating finding documentaries. They are shown on TV at awkward times, hidden on lesser-known channels, and rarely placed on catch up services. But, what about a streaming service that exclusively shows documentaries – from feature-length films to series and shorts, all in one place – 24/7. And how does it compare to what many see as the leader in documentary streaming, Netflix?

DocPlay vs Netflix

Thanks to an evolution in affordable digital recording technology, it’s never been easier to create a documentary. Simply choose your subject, do your research and away you go. There are literally thousands of great documentaries made every year, but we rarely get a chance to see them. They’re either poorly marketed or under-appreciated by TV big wigs who turn their noses up at risky content.

But this is all set to change in Australia and New Zealand with DocPlay, a genius concept devised by the clever folk at Madman Entertainment, one of Australia’s biggest independent film and TV distributors. They provide a wide range of world class docs in sub-genres such as Art, Culture, Sports, Science and Nature, all within one single platform. 

Their biggest rival in the market is Netflix, until now a standard-bearer in producing boundary breaking documentaries such as Making A Murderer, Icarus and Amanda Knox. The problem is that Netflix now throws a lot of money at its own exclusively made content, meaning docos that it doesn’t produce rarely get a play, and if they do, they disappear as fast as they arrive.

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What is the difference between DocPlay and Netflix?

Netflix has established itself as the home of online streaming. It’s great for a wide range of movies and TV series, but the market that it caters for is a big one. Their content is aimed at adults, kids or even the entire family. They have everything from comedy and drama to action and kids TV covered, and it can be really tough to search out strong documentaries within all their other material. 

DocPlay’s content is a lot more concise and aimed at those who love a bit of real-life drama. They’ve taken some of the most well known documentaries around and feature them alongside lesser-known titles that are equally and at times more enthralling than that of their more established cousins. So, with DocPlay you know what you are getting, how to get it, and the focus of the team behind it.

Docos on DocPlay this Month

There are some real standout docos on DocPlay right now and in the coming months, so we’ve listed a few that you might already know, alongside some that you’ll want to know.

Popular CategoriesDocos Featured
Popular TitlesLouis Theroux: My Scientology Movie, Searching for Sugar Man, The Cove, The September Issue, Man On Wire
Short FilmsThe Ghost in the Machine, Drummer Girl, The Battle, Land To Vale, Wild Waters
Art & CultureBlank City, McQueen, Trespassing Bergman, Garry Winogrand: All Things are Photographable, A Matter of Taste
Human InterestMidnight Oil: 1984, Wayne, Machines, 91%: A Film About Guns in America, A Complete History of My Sexual Failures
MusicLeonard Cohen: Bird On A Wire, Biggie & Tupac, 20 Feet From Stardom, Broadway Idiot, A Band Called Death
Science & NatureFuture Baby, Homo Sapiens, Acid Ocean, Chasing Ice, Blackfish
SportsThe Final Draw, The Final Story, Andy Irons: Kissed By God, All For One, The Chosen Few

Documentaries on DocPlay vs Netflix

If documentaries are your thing, as they are for many of us, then the sheer choice on DocPlay wins hands down. They don’t have to mix up their content and cater for such a wide an audience as Netflix. There’s no risk that you won’t find something that will easily grab your attention and there is a huge amount of content aimed at people exactly like you. There are 27 subcategories to choose from in total which is enough to whet the appetite of any serious fan of the genre. It’s also cheaper than Netflix and you can cancel your subscription at any time.

How much does DocPlay cost compared to Netflix?


There are two options when considering a DocPlay subscription. You can either take out a rolling monthly plan for $6.95, which will give you access to all DocPlay content in high definition, with no ads and customer support. Or you can take out an annual plan for $69.95 (works out at $5.83/month), which also comes with DocPlay content in high definition, with no ads and customer support.  You can try out DocPlay with their 30 day free trial, available to all new customers. 


There are three subscriptions to consider when it comes to Netflix. To watch standard definition content, the price is $9.99. For HD content, a monthly subscription cost $13.99. Ultra 4K definition is available on compatible devices and comes with a monthly subscription cost of $19.99. You can try out Netflix with their 30 day free trial, available to all new customers.

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DocPlay vs Netflix on the go

One more thing that these two platforms share is ease of content access on the move. Once you have subscribed to either, you can simply download the DocPlay or Netflix app at your preferred store, log in via your smartphone or tablet and access films and series wherever you may be – whether commuting to work or taking a weekend break away. Check out all compatible devices below.

Google ChromecastYesDocPlay / Netflix
Apple TVYesDocPlay / Netflix

Telstra TVYesDocPlay / Netflix
Smart TVsYesDocPlay / Netflix
XboxYesDocPlay / Netflix 
Apple iPhone, iPad and iPodYesDocPlay / Netflix
TouchAndroid Phones and TabletsYesDocPlay / Netflix
Samsung TVYesDocPlay / Netflix

Which is the Best Option?

For some of the best and most thought-provoking documentaries around, DocPlay stands out by a mile. You can wait a long time for a good doco to appear on Netflix, whereas DocPlay adds quality to its roster on a weekly basis, making sure you’re never left short-changed when on the lookout for an original series or film. It’s easy to watch wherever you go and has a seriously varied range of topics, meaning you’ll always find something that suits your mood. It’s also cheaper than Netflix and is aimed exclusively at the documentary loving public.


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