Foxtel Now Review: Streaming TV plus 2 Weeks Free


Summary

Our Verdict

Foxtel Now


Foxtel Now delivers a mix of live and on-demand TV channels and viewing options to homes and mobile devices

 
Overall 93%
Content
Usability
Value

Foxtel Now delivers a mix of live and on-demand TV channels and viewing options to homes and mobile devices via broadband.

Foxtel Now is Foxtel’s answer to on-demand streaming services like Netflix and Stan. It lets subscribers watch what they want, when they want it, how they want it.

Fully supporting HD streaming for both live and on-demand content, Foxtel Now is as flexible as your viewing needs.

What makes Foxtel Now different?

With traditional cable TV, your monthly subscription gets you access to channels that broadcast their programs at dedicated times.

Most modern streaming services give subscribers access to a media library that’s available to stream on demand. Sometimes they also have premium content that’s available for rent or purchase for an additional cost.

What Foxtel Now does is being all three models together. Subscribers pick content packs that are available to them anytime – so they can watch them live or on demand. If they want access to additional TV shows or movies, they can pick additional content packs – and pay extra for the privilege.

The big break from traditional Pay TV offerings is that all of the content is available without a cable. Every pack is streamed directly via broadband. So there’s no set top box or cable installation required to view it. Just sign up online and you can start viewing immediately!

Foxtel from Telstra

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Entertainment + Drama or Movies
Package. 48 channels of brilliant TV.
$20
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Foxtel Now Free for 24 months

Free Foxtel Now for 24 months +
Telstra TV + Google Home Mini on
the Unlimited + Streaming Bundle
$99
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What does Foxtel Now deliver?

Foxtel Now has updated its pricing point and availability of packs. From what originally included five starter channel packs is now limited to one entry pack, which includes the Pop and Lifestyle Pack for $25/month.

From there, you can add any of the three premium packs: Drama ($10/month), Sport ($29/month), and Movies ($20/month). If you want to get your hands on the Kids and Docos packs, better get the All Packs bundle for $104/month.

PackCostIncludes
Pop & Lifestyle (entry)$25/monthShowcase, FOX8, Comedy Channel, MTV. 111 funny, Lifestyle, Arena, E!, TLC
Drama (premium)$10/monthShowcase, BBC UKTV, BBC First, Universal Channel, TV Hits
Sports (premium)$29/monthFox Sports (501, 503, 505, 506, 507), Fox League, Footy Play, BeIn Sport (1,2,3), ESPN (1,2), Eurosport
Movies (premium)$20/monthPremiere, Disney, Masterpiece, Action, Romance, Thriller, Family, Comedy, More, Greats
All Packs Bundle (including Kids & Docos)$104/monthDiscovery, National Geographic Channel, Discovery Turbo, CI, A&E, BBC Knowledge, History, Nat Geo Wild, Disney Channel, Disney Junior, Disney XD, Nick Jr, Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon

Does Foxtel Now have unique content?

Game of Thrones S1-7 (MA15+) showcase Part of the Pop Pack & Drama Pack

showcase | Game of Thrones S1-7 (MA15+) | Part of the Pop Pack & Drama Pack. Photo: Foxtel

Foxtel has an exclusive deal with HBO that allows them to stream HBO content directly, just hours after it airs in the USA. These shows all live on the Showcase Channel. This means that subscribers can live stream Westworld, Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead and more directly for as little as $15 a month.

As well as HBO exclusives, Foxtel Now delivers locally-produced shows and movies that include the award-winning TV show Wentworth – a dramatic retelling of life inside an Australian women’s prison. Other shows include The Kettering Incident, a gripping science-fiction mystery set in small-town Tasmania, the contemporary espionage thriller Secret City and the 1950s-set melodrama A Place to Call Home.

There is also the much-vaunted Picnic At Hanging Rock – a drama series produced by Foxtel adapted from Joan Lindsay’s 1967 novel of the same name. It tells the story of a group of schoolgirls who mysteriously disappear while on an outing to Hanging Rock.

What about sport?

True to form, Foxtel Now offers a premium Sports Pack for $29/month that lets subscribers stream over 40 different sports. This includes live-streaming coverage of AFL, NRL, NBA, NFL, Super Rugby, Australian and European football, Supercars, Formula 1™, international cricket and more!

Subscribers can also get access to each of the MUTV, LFCTV and Chelsea TV channels for an extra 1c per channel per year.

As a Premium Pack, the Sport Pack needs to be added on to a starter pack like the Pop Pack. At $15/month + $29/month, that’s $44/month for all the shows and sports you could watch!

Are there any accessories for Foxtel Now?

Foxtel Now box

The Foxtel Now box is the simple way to stream Foxtel Now to your TV. Photo: Foxtel

One key difference between Foxtel Now and other streaming services is the Foxtel Now box. While other providers are content to let you watch your shows on your laptop or via your smartphone, the Foxtel Now box gives you a full-featured streaming device.

Unlike the third-party apps that come installed on some Smart TVs, this box is designed from the ground up to make browsing and streaming Foxtel Now smooth and seamless.

Next, this little device also gives you full access to everything else you’d want to stream. From free-to-air* TV (live and catch-up) to Stan to YouTube, you get easy access to your favourite content with the Foxtel Now box. Just plug the box in and you’re ready to go. No need to mess around switching inputs and remotes to watch different services.

And for those of us who like to stream from our smartphones, tablets, and laptops, the Foxtel Now box has a neat trick up its sleeve — full Chromecast functionality built right into the box. Whether you use Chromecast to view live streams from apps like Twitch, or to throw your photos and videos up on the big screen for all to see, the Foxtel Now box has you covered. Just select it from the Chromecast menu in your favourite apps.

At $99, the Foxtel Now box hits the right balance between price and features.

User Experience

The Foxtel Now app features four tabs that list out what’s available to stream: Home, Live TV, On Demand and Kids, with the On Demand tab splitting TV Shows, Movies, Sports and channels into a number of subgenres.

The offerings are listed horizontally in themed sections – including Best of HBO, Foxtel Originals, Best of Lifestyle and Trending TV – making it easy to navigate.

Near the bottom of the screen is the On Now row. This lists live TV shows that are airing at that moment and comes complete with a progress bar – so you know how far into the show you are before you click.

However, it does come up short in some areas. The Foxtel Now app doesn’t let you curate your own list of favourites. So when you’re browsing the Foxtel Now offerings and see a show or movie you might want to catch later, there is no easy way to bookmark it for later.

Another issue is that the app on mobile devices does not lend itself well to binge-watching. On the iOS and Android apps, when an episode finishes, it returns you to the ‘Home’ menu. If you want to watch the next episode, you have to navigate your way back to the show’s page and select it manually. This only seems to happen on smartphone and tablet apps – on Telstra TV, PC and PS4 versions of the app, the next episode plays automatically.

Subtitle options are now a mainstay and can be activated with a click. While making content accessible for those with hearing impairments, this is also useful if you’re watching in a high-noise environment.

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How to access Foxtel Now

Foxtel Now is available across a range of mobile devices – see the table below.

To get started, all you have to do is create an account online and enter your payment details. You then select the packs you want access to for the month. As soon as you have made your selection, you simply sign in using the app of your choice – or via a browser – and bingo! You’re watching Foxtel Now!

Cost and promos

As mentioned before, Foxtel Now offers five distinct base packs that cover Drama, Pop, Documentaries, Kids and Lifestyle channels. There are also two premium packs covering Sports and Movies.

Both the Pop and Drama packs come with Showcase – and if you want both, it’s just $25/month for both!

All new subscribers get two weeks free access to all packs, letting you see what’s available before you commit to a subscription. After the free trial period, you’re only charged for the packs you picked during the sign-up process. And you can change the mix of packs once a month.

Device Compatibility

Foxtel Now is currently available on a wide range of devices.

DeviceDoes it work?DeviceDoes it work?
Foxtel Now boxYes (HD)ChromecastYes (HD)
PCChrome and Safari only (HD)AirPlayYes
MacChrome and Safari only (HD)Xbox OneYes
Telstra TVYes (HD)PS3Yes
iOSYesPS4Yes (HD)
AndroidYesSmart TVsSamsung, Sony, LG

Foxtel Now is continuing to expand its compatibility range.

Summary – The best of both worlds?

Thanks to slick new apps, HD expanding to other platforms and on-demand content, as well as full support of low-cost streaming devices like the Chromecast, Telstra TV and the Foxtel Now box itself, Foxtel Now lets you truly get the best of what both on-demand and live TV worlds have to offer online. All at a low price – and you can cancel anytime, too. There’s a free two-week trial available so you can try Foxtel Now for yourself!

*Requires free-to-air aerial connected to Foxtel Now box