Foxtel vs Foxtel Now: What's the real difference?


Foxtel vs Foxtel Now

Delivering pay TV to Australians for the past few decades – and growing constantly over the years – Foxtel has the most comprehensive range of TV content available, across multiple genres. With 55 channels included as part of the base Foxtel Plus bundle, you’re already enjoying far more choice than regular broadcast TV – and adding extra channel packs like Sports HD and Movies HD can enhance that experience even more, right up to the Platinum Plus Bundle which includes everything Foxtel has to offer – a vast amount of content, which includes Netflix.

Foxtel Now, on the other hand, is Foxtel adapted to the streaming era, with both live Foxtel channels and on-demand content delivered via your broadband internet connection to your mobile device, computer or TV. Foxtel Now provides access to most of the channels and content that satellite Foxtel does, but without the need for installation or lock-in contracts – making it perfect for people who move around a lot, and those unable to get access to the satellite version of Foxtel.

What Makes Foxtel and Foxtel Now Different?

Whether it’s Foxtel via satellite or Foxtel Now via broadband, once connected you’ll have access to a vast range of content that you simply can’t find anywhere else. With channels covering everything from first-run drama to premium sports to blockbuster movies, there’s something for everyone amongst Foxtel’s diverse channel line-up.

The Foxtel Plus that all satellite subscribers get offers 55 channels covering everything from drama, news, and music to special channels for the kids, with premium drama channels like Fox Showcase (the home of HBO’s acclaimed shows) and Fox One (home of premium drama channel FX) included. Other channel packs that can be added include Movies HD and Sports HD, letting you tailor your viewing to exactly what you want. The iQ4 set top box that’s central to the Foxtel experience also makes bundling Netflix possible with a full app on-board, which makes for a very well-rounded and appealing entertainment package.

Choose How you Want to Watch

Foxtel Now, meanwhile, also comes with a base set of channels, with the Pop and Lifestyle packs forming the entry-level channel bundle called Essentials, alongside a set of bonus channels – bringing the base line-up to 32 channels in total, including Fox Showcase, the home of HBO shows like Game of Thrones. Extra channel packs can be added to get access to live sports, a wide range of movies or premium drama.

With so much of its content exclusively licensed to Foxtel, regardless of which method of viewing you pick, you’ll be gaining access to some of the best TV you’ll find anywhere – and it can only be found through Foxtel.

Foxtel Now Packs

Plan
Inclusions
Price
All Packs
  • New customers: All Foxtel Now packs $25/mth for 3 mths. Ends 6 Dec
  • All Packs
  • No Lock-in Contract
  • Premium dramas from the UK & US. Live and On Demand
  • 25+ channels of Lifestyle, Drama, Comedy, Reality, News & Entertainment
  • First 3 mths $25/mth
First 3 mths $25/mth
$104 from month 4
Min Cost - $25 over 1 month for new customers, $104 otherwise

Essentials pack
  • New customers: All Foxtel Now packs $25/mth for 3 mths. Ends 6 Dec
  • Essentials pack
  • No Lock-in Contract
  • 25+ channels: Lifestyle, Drama, Comedy, Entertainment & more
  • Plus all other premium channel packs with Foxtel Now's Cyber Sale
  • $25/mth
$25/mth
Min Cost - $25 over 1 month

Essentials + Drama Extra pack
  • New customers: All Foxtel Now packs $25/mth for 3 mths. Ends 6 Dec
  • Essentials + Drama Extra pack
  • No Lock-in Contract
  • Stream the best from BBC, Universal, Fox Crime, and Fox One
  • Entertainment, drama, comedy, reality TV & lifestyle from Australia & around the world
  • First 3 mths $25/mth
First 3 mths $25/mth
$35 from month 4
Min Cost - $25 over 1 month for new customers, $35 otherwise

Essentials + Movies pack
  • New customers: All Foxtel Now packs $25/mth for 3 mths. Ends 6 Dec
  • Essentials + Movies pack
  • No Lock-in Contract
  • 11 TV channels full of the hottest Movies - ad free & a huge library
  • 25+ channels of Lifestyle, Drama, Comedy, Reality, News & Entertainment
  • First 3 mths $25/mth
First 3 mths $25/mth
$45 from month 4
Min Cost - $25 over 1 month for new customers, $45 otherwise

Essentials + Sports pack
  • New customers: All Foxtel Now packs $25/mth for 3 mths. Ends 6 Dec
  • Essentials + Sports pack
  • No Lock-in Contract
  • Stream AFL and NRL on Fox Sports
  • + Formula 1, NBA, Baseball, V8 Supercars & much more
  • First 3 mths $25/mth
First 3 mths $25/mth
$54 from month 4
Min Cost - $25 over 1 month for new customers, $54 otherwise

Last audited 30 November 2020

What Do They Deliver?

Part of the base packs on Foxtel Now and also the standard Foxtel Plus bundle, the Fox Showcase channel has exclusive rights to everything from acclaimed network HBO – giving Australia access to much-acclaimed shows like Game of Thrones, Westworld, Lovecraft Country, The Outsider, Veep, Euphoria, Watchmen, The Undoing, Big Little Lies and many more. All of it is available to stream on demand in high definition, too, alongside thousands of hours of other content that’s included in your subscription price. There’s even a dedicated channel for those who like to binge-watch shows – Box Sets runs entire seasons, 24 hours a day. Fox One, meanwhile, brings you hot new dramas like the acclaimed Devs and the acclaimed new series Next.

Sports fans, meanwhile, are well catered for by the range of 12 HD channels available through both Foxtel and Foxtel Now, including comprehensive live coverage of sports from Australia (including AFL and NRL) and around the globe, 24 hours a day. In addition to the multiple Fox Sports channels, you’ve got access to the international resources of ESPN and beIN.

What Does Foxtel Offer?

Foxtel splits its channels into separate packs that can be added individually to the base 55-channel Foxtel Plus bundle, which all subscribers get. You can add Sports HD, Movies HD, Kids, Favourites and, of course, bundle them with a standard Netflix plan, with costs for each pack varying depending on what’s included. Each channel pack also unlocks access to its on-demand content, increasing the value hugely.

For both the Movies and Sports packs, access to high definition (HD) channels is now included, and subscribers to the Movies HD and Sports HD packs also get free access to Foxtel’s new 4K channels – Australia’s first broadcast 4K television channels.

Premium Viewing with Platinum Plus Bundle

If you want the whole lot, the Platinum Plus Bundle containing over 90 channels plus high definition, multiroom casting and Netflix is your best option. Do watch out for special offers, as free or reduced-price installation or the iQ4 set-top box are often offered as part of advertised bundles.

What Does Foxtel Now Offer?

With Foxtel Now, your first move when subscribing is to get the base Essentials pack – which incorporates the “Pop” and “Lifestyle” packs – at $25/month. After that, you can add any of the premium packs — Drama, Sport, Movies, Docos and Kids. While the packs bear similar names to those in the hardware Foxtel service, not all the channels available on the iQ4 box have made the transition over to Foxtel Now.

Pack / Channel / Bundle Cost / MonthHighlightsFeatured Shows
Essentials pack $25 Fox Showcase, Fox8, Fox Comedy, Fox Arena, E!, TLC Game of Thrones, Perry Mason, Westworld, DC’s Stargirl, Below Deck Mediterranean
Essentials + Drama Extra pack $35 BBC UKTV, BBC First, Universal Channel Burden of Truth, Tin Star, Trackers, Bulletproof
Essentials + Sport pack $54 Fox Sports, Fox League, Footy Play AFL, NRL, NBA Playoffs, FIA Formula One World Championship
Essentials + Movie pack $45 Movies Premiere, Movies Hits, Movies Greats Bad Boys for Life, Spies in Disguise, Little Women, Playing with Fire
All Packs (including Kids & Docos) $104 Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, National Geographic, Discovery Channel We Bare Bears The Movie, Ollie’s Pack, Alone, Save This Shark

Trial it for Free

Aside from the individual premium packs that are available to add, you can get everything on offer – which includes the Kids and Docos packs, unavailable otherwise, by opting for the All Packs bundle. Note that you can cancel your subscription anytime – there’s no setup fee or lock-in contract. There’s a free 10-day trial for new subscribers which opens up full access to every channel pack so you can road test them all and see which ones you want to keep.

Foxtel Plans

Plan
Inclusions
Price
Main Event
  • Main Event
  • No Lock-in Contract
  • Set-top Box Included
  • Easy access via broadcast on Foxtel
  • Basic Foxtel subscription required
  • starts at $20/7 days
starts at $20/7 days
duration depends on event
Min Cost - $20-30 for WWE, $50-60 for big-ticket boxing

Foxtel Plus Bundle
  • iQ4 box & install fees waived
  • Foxtel Plus Bundle
  • 12 Month Contract
  • Set-top Box Included
  • 50+ channels
  • Enjoy 130 complete drama series
  • $49/mth
$49/mth
Min Cost - $588 on a 12 month direct debit plan with iQ4. New customers only.

Foxtel Plus Bundle
  • Foxtel Plus Bundle
  • No Lock-in Contract
  • Set-top Box Included
  • 50+ channels
  • Enjoy 130 complete drama series
  • $49/mth
$49/mth
Min Cost - $334 on direct debit for 1 month with iQ4 (incl $150 iQ4 box fee, $35 standard connection & $100 professional install fee).

Foxtel Plus & Netflix Bundle
  • Foxtel Plus & Netflix Bundle
  • No Lock-in Contract
  • Set-top Box Included
  • Netflix Standard Plan included
  • 50+ channels
  • $63/mth
$63/mth
Min Cost - $348 on direct debit for 1 month with iQ4 (incl $150 iQ4 box fee, $35 standard connection & $100 professional install fee).

Movies HD & Kids Bundle
  • Movies HD & Kids Bundle
  • No Lock-in Contract
  • Set-top Box Included
  • Foxtel Plus & Movies HD
  • Thousands of hours of movies
  • $74/mth
$74/mth
Min Cost - $259 on direct debit for 1 month with iQ4 (incl $150 iQ4 box fee, $35 standard connection & $100 professional install fee).

Last audited 30 November 2020

The User Experience

Foxtel Now launched its own custom-designed streaming box at the end of 2017, and for those that choose to go with the Foxtel Now option it’s an easy way to get Foxtel onto your screen in HD via your broadband connection at a low cost. The interface is based on the familiar iQ interface for ease of use – something you’ll also find on the latest Telstra TV box, where the Foxtel Now app does a superb job of streaming live channels and on-demand content. Apps are now also available on recent-model LG, Sony and Samsung smart TVs.

The Box is Set, the Choices are Unlimited

Foxtel via satellite, meanwhile, requires the installation of a set-top box, with the iQ4 the latest update to the device that both receives and records your Foxtel channels, as well as serving as an on-demand streaming hub. The iQ4 is only available with satellite installations, which are now the default for all new Foxtel customers.

The iQ4 can record up to 345 hours of entertainment in SD or 172 hours of HD, and a constantly updated electronic program guide (EPG) makes it easy to find and record your shows. Foxtel Now simulates much of this in its apps, but it’s just as simple to navigate and use. Foxtel’s catch-up service, Foxtel On Demand, is included with both.

The iQ4 also bundles a smart remote control which has recently been upgraded to have full voice search functionality – you can find something to watch just by pressing a button and asking for what you want. For example, you could instantly find everything available to stream that stars Sean Connery – and you can even search using famous movie quotes!

The Online Streaming option

Foxtel Now doesn’t require a set-top box, since you watch via the internet, either in a web browser or through the Foxtel Now app on various platforms. You can access Foxtel Now on your PC, Mac, Telstra TV, Foxtel Now Box, Playstation 4, Sony, LG and Samsung smart TVs, iOS/Android phone or tablet and Google Chromecast, with content available in HD where possible. Meanwhile, the older version of the app, Foxtel Play, is still available on Xbox One, Playstation 3, and older Smart TVs.

Foxtel offers a mobile app which lets you watch your favourite shows and movies on the go, which is a great feature to have access to while travelling. Foxtel satellite customers and Foxtel Now both get access to the same mobile app to watch subscribed channels and content when out and about – it’s called Foxtel Go, and is included with all Foxtel and Foxtel Now subscriptions at no extra cost. You can easily access the Foxtel Go app across several devices, making it much easier to watch your favourites wherever you go.

How to Access Foxtel and Foxtel Now

Foxtel Pay TV is available right across Australia, thanks to satellite technology that beams high definition and 4K channels to you no matter where you are (do note, though, that on-demand content on the Foxtel iQ4 box requires a broadband internet connection and will consume a reasonable amount of your data limit if you have one). Foxtel Now, meanwhile, is available anywhere you have a broadband connection.

Device Compatibility

Foxtel Now is currently available on the following devices, with more to come:

Which One Is Best for You — Foxtel or Foxtel Now?

At the entry package level, Foxtel’s Pay TV service definitely provides more value for your money — provided of course, that the service is available in your area. Otherwise, you can just opt for Foxtel Now.

If you like a broad range of channels to choose from, the Platinum Plus Bundle from Foxtel might be the best thing for you. Otherwise, if you’re not too particular about all the extra channels — or if either cable or satellite installation is not an option — then picking and choosing selected channel packs from Foxtel Now potentially works out to be more cost-effective.

Either way, you’ll be getting access to a huge world of TV entertainment and information that you simply cannot get anywhere else.

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