Acorn TV, an American streaming service that specialises in content from the United Kingdom, is coming to… the United Kingdom. Launching on April 29, the service will cost £4.99/month (or £49.99/year).
The battle for British programming is heating up, with a new contender for the “Best of British” title – Acorn TV. Launched in the U.S. in 2011 and owned by AMC Networks, Acorn TV is a streaming-only service with more than 1 million subscribers around the world. It specialises in content from Great Britain, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand.
As well as licensed TV content, Acorn TV also commissioned and co-produced original programmes, such as British mysteries Queens of Mystery and Agatha Raisin, Series 2 and 3 starring Ashley Jensen; Irish period mystery series Dead Still, New Zealand thriller The Sounds, and gritty British crime drama London Kills.
Starting April 29, Acorn TV will be available in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Subscribers get a free 30-days trial, and the service will be available on most of the major streaming devices, including Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Chromecast and Apple TV.
It will also be available via Amazon Prime Video Channels and Apple TV Channels.
Matthew Graham, General Manager of Acorn TV, said:
The United Kingdom has a long-standing tradition of producing first-rate dramas and mysteries, so we’re thrilled to feature so many popular, award-winning programs in one place like ITV’s Foyle’s War and BBC’s Keeping Faith, as well as introduce UK audiences to the charming, British-produced Acorn TV Original Queens of Mystery.
Acron TV’s original production, Queens of Mystery, was created and co-written by Julian Unthank (Doc Martin, New Tricks), It’s a contemporary, warm-hearted mystery series that’s also a spin on the classic whodunit.
The series follows a perennially single female detective Matilda (Olivia Vinall, The Woman in White, Apple Tree Yard) and her three crime writing aunts – the motherly Aunt Beth (Sarah Woodward, The Politician’s Husband, New Blood), the rebellious Aunt Cat (Julie Graham, Penance, The Bletchley Circle), and the book smart Aunt Jane (Siobhan Redmond, Unforgotten, Between the Lines), who help her solve murder mysteries in the picturesque region of Wildemarsh.
UK Streaming Competition Heating Up
In the US, Acorn TV is a fierce competitor of BritBox, the streaming service from ITV and the BBC. Now that BritBox operates in the UK, Acorn TV is also crossing the pond.
With US streaming giants like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Disney+ taking such large chunks of the UK streaming market, it remains to be seen whether there’s room for so many streaming services based mainly on British content – BBC iPlayer, BritBox UK, Sky/NOW TV, and now – Acorn TV.