Foxtel Review — Discover A World of Premium TV Live and On Demand


Summary

Our Verdict

Foxtel Pay TV


Foxtel is the only game in town for premium sport, drama and even Australia's first 4K channel.

 
Overall 88%
Content
Usability
Value

Nearly half of all Australian homes now have Foxtel bringing a whole planet’s worth of entertainment to their lounge rooms, giving them access to the largest range of drama, comedy, sport, and entertainment around. If you’re not in one of those homes, you’re missing out on a lot.

Foxtel has stunning dramas, express from the US and UK, like WestworldOutlander, Game of Thronesand The Walking Dead, as well as exclusive live premium sport from Wimbledon and Roland-Garros, to V8 and F1 motorsport, to AFL, NRL, and much more — all in high definition. Foxtel’s been hard at work making sure their subscribers have access to the best of the best, and at a lower cost than ever before.

What Makes Foxtel Different from Regular TV?

Having been Australia’s first subscription TV service, Foxtel has 20 years of experience in the industry, and has grown to encompass a vast range of channels that cater to all tastes — handily divided up into separate channel packages so that you can pick and choose which Foxtel experience suits you best. Foxtel has spent a lot of time, effort, and money to gain access to the top tier of TV programming available. There are premium drama series express-delivered from the US and the UK along with exclusive Australian productions that have been winning worldwide acclaim.

For sport fans there are 18 channels of 24/7 sport that takes in live coverage of the world’s major events and all the action and excitement from Australia’s sporting codes. There are ten channels of ad-break-free movies from all genres, both classics and hot new releases straight from the cinema. Music video channels, lifestyle channels, documentary channels, news channels… it’s a channel-surfer’s dream, a true entertainment hub.

Foxtel from Telstra

Get the Foxtel from Telstra
Entertainment + Drama or Movies
Package. 48 channels of brilliant TV.
$30
/mthover 12 mths

Foxtel Now Free for 24 months

Free Foxtel Now for 24 months +
Telstra TV on the Unlimited
Broadband + Streaming Bundle
$99
/mthover 24 mths

What Sort of Channels Does Foxtel Deliver?

Foxtel has simplified their whole system of subscription packages, making the entire process fully customisable so that you’re only paying for the content and services you actually want. The base of it all is the $29/month Entertainment Pack, which is included with the basic Foxtel service, and supplies a range of 45 basic channels, including Fox8, MTV, Arena, Discovery, Disney Junior for the kids, and a bunch of news and information channels ranging from CNN and Sky News to Sky’s racing channels and Fox Sports News. Every Foxtel subscriber gets this package of channels — it’s the base-level service so you can’t opt out of this channel pack.

On top of this, you can then add the packages that appeal to you. 

Pack/Channel/BundleCost/MonthHighlights
Entertainment (Base Pack)$29
  • Fox8
  • UKTV
  • Arena
  • Universal Channel
Sport+$29
  • Fox Sports
  • Fox Footy
  • Fox League
  • ESPN
  • beIN Sports
Drama+$20
  • Showcase
  • BBC First
  • Box Sets
Movies+$20
  • Premiere
  • Action
  • Masterpiece
  • Disney
Entertainment Plus+$10
  • Comedy Channel
  • SyFy
  • E!
Docos+$10
  • National Geographic
  • Discovery Channel
  • History Channel
Kids+$10
  • Cartoon Network
  • Nickelodeon
  • Disney Channel
HD Upgrade+$10
  • Crisp HD Picture

Sport fans will want the Sport Pack (add an extra $29), which gives you access to Fox’s six sports channels — and that means live coverage of AFL, NRL, golf, tennis, cricket, soccer, the supercars, and a lot more.

The Movies Pack ($20) adds ten movie channels — including Premiere for the latest and greatest, and Movie Greats for some of cinema’s most enduring classics.

The Drama Pack ($20) gives you half a dozen channels filled to the brim with the shows everyone’s talking about, including Fox Showcase, otherwise known as “The Channel with Game of Thrones”!

There’s even a “Box Sets” channel where complete seasons of shows can be found airing with back-to-back episodes, like True Blood and The Walking Dead.

The Entertainment Plus, Docos, and Kids Packs all add more high-quality channel choices in those categories for $10 each.

The upgrade to HD is only $10/month extra, and in our opinion, well worth it — most of the key channels are available in HD, including all of the sports, movie, and drama channels. If you’ve got a modern HDTV, you will be wanting this for the best possible picture quality.

Check out how Foxtel compares to other streaming providers below:

Streaming TV & Movies Plans

Foxtel from Telstra Entertainment + Movies
  • Set-top Box Included
  • 3 Content Genres
$30/mth

Movies + Entertainment
  • Set-top Box Included
  • 3 Content Genres
$49/mth

iQ4K – The iQ Gets Smarter & Faster!

With the launch of 4K programming comes the release of the new iQ4K set-top box. That said, the main reason for this new box is to stream 4K video beginning with the live airing of cricket games, alongside movies and various documentaries.

But make no mistake, they’re not going to stop at one channel if all goes to plan. Satellite is an ideal delivery method for 4K, freed from the constraints of free-to-air broadcast TV when it comes to available bandwidth –— the only real limit is how much capacity Foxtel has on the satellite. This also means that even if you’re one of the many suffering from slow broadband and can’t stream 4K video via the internet, you’ll have no such problems with the iQ4K — the use of satellite means pristine 4K video will be available to everyone.

Compared to the iQ3, which had a rather sluggish performance that was always an annoyance to one degree or another, the iQ4K has a fast, feature-rich and hugely capable box which makes the experience of simply using Foxtel magnitudes better. The fact that it comes with access to 4K broadcasts via satellite, well, that’s just the icing on the cake. Highly recommended.

How to Get Foxtel

With connection available both via cable (in capital cities) and via satellite, Foxtel is now available to more than 70% of Australian homes. Households in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, and the Gold Coast have the choice of receiving their Foxtel fix via either satellite or cable (satellite will eventually become the only option when Foxtel’s cable is taken over by the NBN in a few years’ time). Those outside these areas get the same quality and breadth of service via satellite. But what of those 30% of households which are unable to receive either cable or satellite?

Well, as long as you have a reasonably fast internet connection and a high enough data cap, the company has you covered with its Foxtel Now option, which allows you to stream Foxtel’s entire offering of channels, live, to a range of devices including Smart TVs, game consoles, and PCs — offering largely the same channel packages as conventional delivery.

Do you want to take Foxtel on the go? That’s what the Foxtel app is for!

The Streaming Alternative

Foxtel Now — the internet-based, online-streaming version of Foxtel — has a slightly different pricing structure to your standard vanilla Foxtel. Subscribers get to add on a selection of genre packs on top of the entry pack, which is the Pop and Lifestyle Pack. These Premium Packs include Drama (+$10), Sports (+$29), Movies (+$20), or get all packs including Kids and Docos for $104/month. A 10-day free trial is available to new subscribers, too, so you can make sure the service is what you’re after before forking out any cash.

If you buy into all of the packs available via Foxtel Now, it will set you back $104/month. While this is a better deal than buying the entire channel selection on Foxtel cable or satellite, it’s worth noting that Foxtel Now currently only plays in HD on the Telstra TV set-top box, Foxtel’s own Foxtel box, Playstation 4, and in certain PC web browsers. This is unlikely to be a deal breaker for most people, nor is the fact that a few regular basic channels are missing, such as Al Jazeera and BBC News.

One other aspect you will have to consider if mulling over the idea of whether to choose Foxtel or Foxtel Now is whether or not your broadband connection can cope with the sheer amount of data which will be pushing through it. Even at standard definition quality, the download amounts will add up very quickly, and you’ll want to avoid incurring extra charges or a connection slow-down from your ISP. To help alleviate worries about data usage, you might look at the Foxtel Broadband Entertainment Bundle, which gives you 45-channel Foxtel access with the iQ4 box, unlimited broadband data each month, and unlimited local and national phone calls all for $104/month. As a bonus, both Foxtel On Demand streaming and the Foxtel app are unmetered under this package, meaning you can watch as much as you like without using up any of your monthly download limit. Not that it matters when it’s unlimited.

As a side-bonus, the Foxtel app is bundled with Foxtel, allowing you to stream Foxtel’s channels on mobile devices such as an iPhone or iPad, for those times when you really need to see that footy game but aren’t anywhere near a TV.

Should You Get Foxtel?

Foxtel is one of the very few major players left in the traditional pay TV sector, and instead of resting on their laurels, the company has been investing in both content and technology to make sure that you, the viewer, has the best experience and value possible. Foxtel’s pricing is becoming more competitive — and if you’re looking for ways to get Foxtel cheaper, you might also want to try getting Foxtel from Telstra. Be sure to check out our offers page to see what extra surprises Foxtel has in store for you.