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Review Summary

Overall - 80%
Functionality - 60%
Ease of Use - 70%
Value for Money - 90%
User Rating: 1.86 ( 61 votes)

Australia’s biggest cable TV company offers a versatile online alternative in Foxtel Now.

Not everyone who wants to get access to Foxtel can do so easily. If you live in an apartment building with no Foxtel cable or satellite access, for example, you’re out of luck. Fortunately, Foxtel’s got a solution in the form of Foxtel Now – a service which lets you subscribe to Foxtel channel packages and watch them streamed live online (even on your TV, with a compatible device).

Plus, there is tons of content available on demand, in HD, and there’s no waiting around for an install, either. Sign-up is instant and there’s no lock-in contract to tie you down. Sounds good, doesn’t it? Let’s have a look at the juicy details about this extremely handy service.

Want to watch instantly & be able to cancel anytime?

Foxtel Now Internet TV is the answer. Check out the free trial.

 

Setup, Cost and Features

You don’t need to pay any setup or installation fee to get Foxtel Now because it’s an entirely different service to the traditional Foxtel cable TV subscription. You just need to sign up for an account on the Foxtel Now website, enter your credit card details and choose the package or packages that best suit you. You pay for the service on a monthly basis. However, you can change your subscription at any time for the next month’s billing cycle. You can cancel your subscription to the service without incurring any penalty. And best of all, Foxtel Now offers a two-week free trial which includes all the packages, so you can try it out for yourself and decide which ones you want to keep.

To get started, you need to choose your Starter Packs. You can pick between Drama, Pop, Docos, Lifestyle and Kids. Drama and Pop are $15/month each or $25/month both, while the others are $10/month each. This brings the total monthly cost to between $10 and $55. In addition, you can get one or both of the Premium Picks – Movies for $20 or Sports for $29, with the three new English Premier League channels available for $5 each, or for 1c each with the Sports package. Just remember that these premium packs aren’t available without getting at least one Starter Pack. Several base entertainment channels are included with any package (V Hits, Fox News, TVSN, Sky News Live, Sky News Business, Sky News Weather, Fox Sport News.).

Cancel anytime

Channel packs can be added and removed to your subscription without penalty whenever you like, with any changes applied as soon as the following month begins. And if you want to take a break from Foxtel Now altogether, you can do that as well. Since there’s no contract, you can pause or cancel your subscription anytime. There’s no charge to do so, and no ongoing cost. If you pause, all your channels will be there, ready to go, when you’re keen on tuning in again.

Real Value

Foxtel Now offers good value to its customers – as long as they know what they want to watch and have enough time to watch every month. The platform is available on a variety of devices, including computers, smartphones/tablets, Telstra TV, PS4, Chromecast and Airplay, as well as the Foxtel Now box. PlayStation 3, Xbox One and select Smart TVs are still able to stream Foxtel content live in SD via the previous Foxtel Play app.

Using the app on all these devices is very simple. You just need to log in once and all your account details are saved, or download the app on your preferred gadget and start streaming. Here’s a handy guide about how to use Foxtel Now on a variety of devices.

As for content, there are plenty of great shows and movies available. In summer/fall 2018, for instance, you can stream new episodes of The Walking Dead, The Real Housewives of Melbourne, Scandal, Strike Back, Silicon Valley, Suits, and more!

Foxtel Now
Watch your favourite shows online, anytime, with Foxtel Now. Photo: Foxtel

Foxtel Now Screens

The main screen shows the most popular and newest content available to Foxtel Now subscribers. However, the items that they show are a general overview, and not all of them may be available to you depending on which packages you have selected. This means that you might choose a program from the items on the list only to find that you don’t have access to it. This isn’t really an issue, because you can easily watch whatever you want from the service as long as you are willing to pay to add the appropriate channel package to your account.

There are three other section available: Live TV, On Demand, and Kids. The Live TV part shows all the channels available on Foxtel Now. The channels that aren’t included in your subscription are greyed out in the list. The On Demand screen is where things get interesting. Here, you can see all the content available to binge from your chosen packages. As for the Kids section, it’s pretty self-explanatory – it features content suitable for the little ones.

Foxtel Now On Demand

Foxtel Now offers a plethora of shows on demand, with new content always available to stream. Titles are listed horizontally in themed rows, like Best of HBO, Foxtel Originals, Best of Lifestyle, and more. To make navigation easier, the On Demand tab splits TV Shows, Movies, Sports and channels into subgenres.

Foxtel Now Live Streaming

It’s a pleasure to watch video-on-demand and live video streams on Foxtel Now. You just have to choose a new channel in Live TV and it buffers for a few seconds. The video flows smoothly on an average ADSL2+ connection, or through Telstra’s 4G network. We were able to watch the ‘Best’ video quality stream on both connections. The video quality is very high which runs close to near-DVD quality.

You may also opt to use the ‘Low’ bandwidth in the app’s settings to watch the most basic and bandwidth-friendly stream if you have worries about data caps. The minimum speed required to watch Foxtel Now in SD is 3Mbps and the minimum speed required to watch Foxtel Now in HD is 7Mbps. The device you use to watch videos has an effect on the quality of the stream as well – mobile devices can only stream videos at a lower bit-rate, unlike with a computer or streaming box.

Not to be overlooked is the fact that you can share the subscription with your girlfriend, boyfriend, husband, wife, or any family member because you can use a single Foxtel Now subscription on two devices at the same time and also have the app registered to run on five devices. If you’re a couple, both with PCs (or Macs) and iPhones, you only need to have one Foxtel Now subscription.

Stream Sports Online

In addition to quality movies and other entertainment, Foxtel Now offers comprehensive access to your favourite sporting events on Fox Sports, ESPN, beIN and other channels. This year the fixtures available for streaming include each and every AFL match before the Grand Final, the entire NRL season before the Grand Final, world-class tennis, PGA golf, featured NFL and NBA games live online from the US each week, the world Rugby Sevens series, Socceroos World Cup qualifiers, Champions League, La Liga, every A-League match, international and domestic Cricket, World Surfing championships, every V8 Supercars contest, all F1 Grand Prix racing fixtures and much more! You can try out the full package of sports action completely free for two weeks thanks to Foxtel Now obligation-free trial offer.

Conclusion

The concept of Foxtel Now is really cool, making it one of the most appealing Pay TV offers on the market. It makes the shows we like more accessible and takes away the need for a cable subscription, which usually comes with a long contract. This can also put a stop to the illegal downloading of TV or movies because they’re now more accessible.

However, getting the full Foxtel Now experience can really be very expensive. If you could share the bill with a partner or family member, then it might still be a good idea to get the full package. It’s hard to find a flaw with Foxtel Now even when just paying for a couple of packages, like a daily dose of Nat Geo documentaries, live sports and the odd blockbuster. Without the hassle of a physical Foxtel installation, you have instant and easy access to the wide world of Foxtel without any lock-in contract to tie you down.

View Comments

5 Comments

  1. CompareTV August 18, 2015 at 1:17 pm - Reply

    Hi Gabe,

    Sorry to hear that!
    Foxtel Play is a purely online self-service subscription, so you do need to deactivate the service yourself from their website.
    To deactivate your Foxtel Play service:

    – Go to http://www.foxtel.com.au/foxtelplay then login with your username and password then click on “Manage your package”

    – Click the “Deactivate” button located on the right hand side under the “My Selection” box

    – You will be transferred to the “Deactivate Service” page. Fill in the form and click on the orange “Deactivate” button.

  2. Sam April 25, 2016 at 7:14 pm - Reply

    I hate how shows run in the background when I’m browsing. It’s very distracting and chews up my internet on things I am not interested in. I want the ability to shut off shows running in the background whilst I peacefully browse or for it to not even be a thing in the first place like Netflix, AnimeLab or many other good streaming services.

    The main thing going for the service is the content however if Foxtel doesn’t work on it’s delicery of said content you’re better off looking for alternative methods of getting your content.

  3. Adam September 25, 2016 at 2:12 pm - Reply

    I won’t even think of subscribing until it comes in HD. It’s hard to fathom that any business can even contemplate giving their customers anything less than HD these days, if Netflix can provide this for $11 a month why can’t Foxtel?
    We’re living in the dark ages in this country, get your act together and provide us with us with a decent streaming product.

    • Michael November 2, 2016 at 12:19 pm - Reply

      Agree totally!
      Absolute rubbish if not in HD

      • Anthony Horan November 3, 2016 at 10:41 am - Reply

        Foxtel has said that HD is coming to to Foxtel Play in early 2017, so the wait is almost over!

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