When Foxtel relaunched its long-standing Foxtel Play service recently as Foxtel Now, there was much promise of big changes and improvements heading to the long-standing service. The service lets you stream selected Foxtel channels via broadband, as well as watch a huge range of content on demand. Foxtel Now is the perfect solution for those who don’t want to get a hardware Foxtel installation set up at home. Or for people who can’t, such as residents of apartment blocks without a satellite dish on the roof. As a bonus, Foxtel Now lets you take live TV on the road with you thanks to free access to the Foxtel app for smartphones and tablets. And now, you can watch on PS4 as well, in brilliant HD.
Turns out the fresh launch and new brand name weren’t just for show. Foxtel has big plans for Foxtel Now – and those plans are starting to see the light of day. The goal is for Foxtel Now to be available across more devices and to provide HD streaming to all subscribers. Something previously only made available to those streaming on Telstra TV.
The new Foxtel Now app on Sony’s market-leading Playstation 4 game console is the first result of this push. It’s bringing high definition Foxtel streaming to millions of PS4 users for the first time. You also get new features like intelligent suggestions for what to watch, the ability to save your favourite channels to make finding what you want to watch faster and easier, and more. The best part? You don’t even need a Playstation Plus membership to use it – just a free Sony Entertainment Network account, which you’ll already have as a PS4 user.
To get your PS4 ready for Foxtel Now, simply grab the free app from the “TV & Video” section of the PS4’s main screen. This section recently got a revamp that brings all TV streaming apps together on the one screen so you can easily find, download and run them. Taking pride of place right at the top is the new Foxtel Now app.
When you go to download it, you may see the app listed in the Playstation Store as being “Foxtel Play.” That’s just the Store being slow to get with the times, though! Once you hit the download button, what you’ll get is the Foxtel Now app, with its shiny new logo to reassure you that you’re in the right place.
Run the app and you’ll be presented with a prompt to log in. You can have full access to the Foxtel Now app, including all available channels and HD streaming, for two full weeks for free. However, you’ll need to pop into your web browser (either on the PS4 itself or your desktop/laptop PC) to create an account if you don’t have one already.
If you’ve had a free two-week Foxtel Play trial before, don’t worry. Just sign in with your existing account and you’ll get a new 14-day free trial so you can check out the new app and see what a huge difference HD streaming makes to the Foxtel Now experience.
What channels are available?
While not every Foxtel channel is available on Foxtel Now, most of them are there across the five regular and two premium channel packs available. Pick any one or more of the regular packs – you only pay for the channel packs you choose. You can then also add one of the premium offerings (Movies and Sport) to enhance your viewing options hugely. The packs available are:
- Pop and Drama at $15 each or both for $25; both include Showcase for all your Game of Thrones needs, with Pop adding general entertainment channels and Drama adding premium channels from the BBC, Universal and more.
- Docos at $10/month, including National Geographic, Discovery Channel, BBC Knowledge and more.
- Lifestyle at $10/month, with Arena, E, TLC and various Lifestyle channels.
- Kids at $10/month featuring channels from Nickelodeon, Disney and more.
The brand new app features a special Kids section, too, so your little ones can sit down for their own TV viewing with all their programs and channels on the one screen.
Foxtel Now is already streaming in HD on the acclaimed (and affordable) Telstra TV box, and the new app for smartphones and tablets now supports streaming to any version of Google Chromecast in HD as well. PC and Mac users can stream in HD right there on their desktop or laptop using the free Google Chrome web browser as well. A separate app is no longer required.
On other devices, your Foxtel Now account will work just fine with the legacy Foxtel Play apps available. But rest assured that updates for other devices are on the way as the rollout of the new service continues in coming months.
If you have a PS4 as part of your home entertainment system, grab the new Foxtel Now app, sign up for the free trial and see for yourself just how good streaming live Foxtel can be on your big-screen TV (and yes, the AFL and NRL are available for streaming in HD as well!)
With Foxtel Now integrated into the PS4’s TV menu alongside on-demand services like Netflix and Stan, you’ve got a powerhouse of an entertainment box right there – even when you’re not playing games.
And with Game of Thrones included in the Drama pack, $15 a month is all you’ll need if you decide to hang around for the brand new season (plus, you can stream all the previous seasons on demand as well!).