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JabbaTheHutt

Foxtel Go - What Will Be The 21 Channels?

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Howdy all,

Just saw this in today's news, and discussed on TV Tonight website:

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/media/broadcast/foxtel-signs-landmark-deal-with-hbo-to-gain-express-access-to-us-shows/story-fna045gd-1226501029200

FOXTEL is turning the tables on pay-television piracy and putting the heat on the free-to-air networks after signing a landmark deal with US TV giant HBO, maker of the popular hits like Game of Thrones, to give consumers access to shows within hours of them airing in the US market.

In another Australian first, the national pay-TV operator will also launch a new app next month offering subscribers 21 channels on their iPads free of charge, after a successful trial of the technology during the London 2012 Olympics.

The moves come as chief executive Richard Freudenstein, nearly a year into the job, looks to kick-start sluggish subscriber growth in a weak consumer environment.

In a move designed to improve the quality of its service and combat rampant piracy, Foxtel has just inked a deal with HBO which boasts some of the most critically acclaimed and watched dramas on television, including Girls, True Blood, and Veep.

The output agreement locks out free-to-air television and gives Foxtel subscribers exclusive first-run access, with dramas airing on a "broadcast express" basis, closing the window between the US and Australian on-air dates.

The long delay, sometimes up to a year, is one of the main reasons some Australians illegally download shows on the internet before they air on television.

"It's a long-term deal and we get all first-run HBO programming on Foxtel," Mr Freudenstein told The Australian.

"You won't see programs like Boardwalk Empire end up on SBS in a couple of years. It removes their ability to sell in a second window to free-to-air television. That won't happen any more. You won't see those programs on free-to-air.

"When we talk about express from the US we mean it very, very seriously. We're going to be putting things to screen often within hours or 24 hours after their first screening in the US. We think that's a service our customers deserve and we also think that it will continue to attack piracy, which is a big issue in this country."

Mr Freudenstein said when Foxtel aired the second season of Sons of Anarchy within three hours of airing in the US at 3pm, it pulled a "very good audience". Foxtel played it again in prime time to another sizeable audience. The level of illegal downloading for the second season was less than the first season.

"There are people that are always going to steal stuff and we can take legal action against them, but the vast majority of people are illegally downloading because they want to see things as soon as they are available, so we think it's very important to bring that programming to them straight away."

Mr Freudenstein, who would not reveal the length of the contract, has been in tough negotiations with HBO for months after agreeing the deal in principle.

"It's a deal that goes further in terms of rights than many have done in Australia before. We've got all the rights we want for catch-up TV, tablet and IPTV (internet via television) free on demand to customers," he said.

He said the increased cost of the agreement had been budgeted for and was partially offset by bringing the Showcase and Showtime movie channels in-house with Premium Movie Partnership earlier this month.

"We have a very big programming budget and we just have to make sure we manage that budget to pay less for stuff that doesn't make a difference to customers and pay for stuff that does make a difference. In terms of overall programming costs, this is within our planned numbers."

HBO content will premiere on Foxtel's premium drama channel Showcase, which will be marketed as the "home of HBO". Subscribers will also be able to watch a library of classic shows such as The Sopranos and Six Feet Under.

The company will soon move to a new ownership structure when News Limited (publisher of The Australian) lifts its stake to 50 per cent in the company.

Foxtel is targeting "diverse and discerning viewers" who typically watch dramas and documentaries on ABC and SBS channels after tying up sports fans with new deals for the National Rugby League and Australian Football League.

The strategy is one plank in Mr Freudenstein's armoury as he attempts to increase Foxtel's penetration of Australian households from about 34 per cent to 50 by 2017, and convince prudent Australian consumers that Foxtel is a premium service worth paying for.

Mr Freudenstein is renegotiating deals with Hollywood studios to simplify Foxtel's channel mix and allow it to offer new price points and packages. It will also mean a slight increase in prices.

"You won't see huge prices but you will continue to see average revenue per user very strong as people take additional services from us," Mr Freudenstein said.

"Over the medium term will there be price increases? Yes. But we're very focused on the fact it is a tough consumer environment out there and we're not going to be ridiculous about what we do with our pricing."

Under Mr Freudenstein's emerging two-pronged content and technology vision, Foxtel will launch a new app next month called Foxtel Go which will offer subscribers 21 live channels and a library of on-demand content on their iPads free of charge.

This follows the huge success of its London 2012 Olympics app which achieved 160,000 downloads and about two million views for eight live dedicated channels. More channels will be added in February and the app will also migrate to laptops and other devices.

"By February we will have radically expanded the channel line-up. It looks beautiful and works really well."

What do you think the 21 channels will be? Will it include sport and movies?

Cheers,

Jabba.

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I can see this as definitely upping the ante for FTA TV. I just don't see it as mitigating piracy all that much. If you have a customer that pirates a few shows due to time issues then they're still paying Foxtel so what do Foxtel care? If they aren't a customer and they're downloading shows then again what do Foxtel care? if a person is unwilling to pay $100 a month to watch shows on Foxtel now, how does (super) fast tracking them make it any more likely? Further, if they are going to have a policy of "You'll never see this on FTA" then isn't that more likely to send people into downloading not less?

One things for sure though. If you have Foxtel then this does seem to make it a much better product.

Regards

Peter Gillespie

PS I'd assume the 21 channels will be out of the 50 or so 'Get Started' bundle that everyone has. If you don't have the sports or movie pack why would Foxtel broadcast it to users for free?

BBC News

CNN

Sky

Fox Sports

National Geo

Weather

etc.

Edited by pgdownload

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PS I'd assume the 21 channels will be out of the 50 or so 'Get Started' bundle that everyone has. If you don't have the sports or movie pack why would Foxtel broadcast it to users for free?

They said there would be 21 channels not everyone would have access to all 21 channels. If you don't pay for sports I'm guessing you won't get access to any of the sports channels. Like you needed to sports tier for the olympics app.

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If Foxtel (or any network) were to put shows from the US on air within the day and in HD, then there is no need to obtain it elsewhere. This is a great move forward by Foxtel.

It's a shame the FTA's think that fast tracking is showing things in 2 weeks and only in SD.

I expect the 21 will be the basic ones that are on the IPTV service through xbox and tbox and will exclude movies and sport initially.

Hopefull the next step will be that foxtel through tbox will be free if you have a foxel subscription.

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They said there would be 21 channels not everyone would have access to all 21 channels. If you don't pay for sports I'm guessing you won't get access to any of the sports channels. Like you needed to sports tier for the olympics app.
Actually they said "offering subscribers 21 channels on their iPads free of charge". You're the one adding qualifications. :) However I'm wondering if the 'app' is that sophisticated. Its easy enough to provide access to people that meet a single criteria (e.g. they have the sports package) however juggling multiple criteria starts getting messy. That said, Foxtel has always been about allowing access to only parts of its product from day one so anything is possible. Guess we'll see.

Regards

Peter Gillespie

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If Foxtel (or any network) were to put shows from the US on air within the day and in HD, then there is no need to obtain it elsewhere. This is a great move forward by Foxtel.

It's a shame the FTA's think that fast tracking is showing things in 2 weeks and only in SD.

I expect the 21 will be the basic ones that are on the IPTV service through xbox and tbox and will exclude movies and sport initially.

Hopefull the next step will be that foxtel through tbox will be free if you have a foxel subscription.

I think differently to you.. i would still access it other ways

I waited until the next day to watch Howzat miniseries just due to the inconvenience of watching it on broadcast TV - subscription TV is no different.

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Too true pete! loving the torrents!

I wonder how much extra $$$ fox will earn on all those extra adverts........Enjoy paying for the ads and I almost forgot how long till they start saving $$$ and playing repeats....gotta love paying for ads and repeats. :hyper:

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Hopefully before long they standardize Foxtel Go, Foxtel on Xbox, Foxtel on TBox, Foxtel on Smart TVs etc. into one product all with the same channels etc. for simplicity.

And it would be nice if you could subscribe on your ipad/laptop without having a normal foxtel subscription as you can with xbox and samsung tvs.

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Of course no mention of Android as always!

cheers laurie

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Amazing Laurie isn't it considering Android has 20% more market share than Apple.

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Amazing Laurie isn't it considering Android has 20% more market share than Apple.

For tablets? I'd seriously doubt that.

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For tablets? I'd seriously doubt that.

So you cut off your nose to spite your face! [ Foxtel ] this happens every time there is a so called new app I have to email back and ask "What about Android" you dick heads

cheers laurie

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So you cut off your nose to spite your face!
Well no. You have an iPad. No nose-ectomy required. :)

Pewter Gillespie

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Yes Laurie, my mistake sorry. It's smartphones where Android are flogging IOS 49% to 19%.

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I think apple has a larger market share in australia for mobiles 64.1% iOs vs 28%. They should still make an app for android though. I will be intersted to see what happens to mobile foxtel. It would make sense to replace the loop channels with the real ones.

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Courtesy of TV Tonight (http://www.tvtonight...p-launches.html)

It is available now and downloadable from the App Store.

The Foxtel Go live channels available now include:

The LifeStyle Channel,

A&E,

SKY News,

National Geographic Channel,

Discovery Channel,

Disney,

Cartoon Network,

Channel [V],

Cbeebies

SPORTS PLAY Powered by FOX SPORTS (includes live Rugby Union, Cricket, A-League and Tennis),

FOX SPORTS PLUS 1, 2, 3 and 4 which are four English Premier League specially programmed channels

Eurosport.

Catch up titles include

ROVE LA (FOX8),

The Walking Dead (FX),

Magic City (SoHo),

Territory Cops (CI Network),

The Only Way is Essex (LifeStyle YOU),

Project Runway Australia (Arena),

Grand Designs Australia (The LifeStyle Channel),

Aqua Teen Hunger Force (The Comedy Channel),

Haven (13th Street),

Duck Dynasty (A&E),

MegaTruckers (A&E),

Gossip Girl (FOX8),

Vampire Diaries (FOX8),

Wicked Tuna (National Geographic Channel),

Deadliest Catch (Discovery Channel),

Copper (FX),

Married to Jonas (E!),

The Amazing World of Gumball (Cartoon Network),

Gravity Falls (Disney),

Harry Connick Jnr. Live on Broadway (Studio)

Spooks (UKTV).

Edited by cnrmlj

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I think data usage will prevent a lot of people using it outside the home someone on the TVTN blog said 726MB for a 47 minute episode of Rove Live! wow what would it be for an AFL game!

cheers laurie

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They are just copying Sky Go in the UK, I refuse to subscribe to Foxtel on Xbox as it is a ripoff since you get six of the $19.50 channels for free on Samsung smart bluray player. Long live torrents the internet filter is dead.

Edited by pheggie

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They are just copying Sky Go in the UK.

As they are both owned by News that would make alot of sense. No point reinventing the wheel. The clown from Foxtel on Mediawatch yesterday said that they would be looking at what the skys in UK, Italy and a couple of other places are doing as part of their future offerings.

Edited by cnrmlj

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I think data usage will prevent a lot of people using it outside the home someone on the TVTN blog said 726MB for a 47 minute episode of Rove Live! wow what would it be for an AFL game!

cheers laurie

Would they not be doing deals with providers to make usage un-metered?

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Thank you for your email to Foxtel.

I appreciate the time you have taken to contact us regarding Foxtel Go.

Foxtel Go will be made available to more devices shortly, stay tuned!

Once more thank you for taking the time to contact us, you can leave your programming feedback here or speak to our Foxtel Consultants on 131 999. A full list of our operating hours can be found on our website.

Yours sincerely

Rhiannon Lockwood

Foxtel Enquiries - Programming

Great when you have an idea what the answer might be from foxtel lol

cheers laurie

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Surely if you were a Telstra mobile subscriber it would be free data running foxtel go....

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