Telstra Planning All-You-Can-Watch Rental Downloads

Last week, Quickflix announced the first Netflix-like service for Australia, letting you watch as many movies as you like for a flat monthly fee. Unsurprisingly, its major competitor Telstra also wants a slice of that business, and says it will have a similar offering in early 2012.

Telstra has long offered movies for rental via its BigPond Movies service, but only on a pay-per-title basis. At the company’s Christmas media briefing today, IPTV director Ben Kinealy said that it was likely Telstra would introduce a similar arrangement in early 2012:

We’re working on a range of expansions to the business model. Right now we have a great pay-per-view service, but we’ll be expanding the category dramatically and we’ll be expanding the business model. We are going to be looking at bringing those types of things and some other business models to BigPond Movies. We are working on a proposition with the studios as we speak. We believe we can have a substantially better offer than our competition, and we continue to look at other opportunities in the market.

The obvious advantage Telstra has in this space is that it can ensure movie downloads aren’t counted against download caps, and can bundle the offer with other services. The disadvantage is that it might choose to tie that deal to long-term contracts particular hardware such as the T-Box. The T-Box is certainly Telstra’s focus for the rest of the year, with a promotional offer of $200 worth of movie credits (to be spent over six months) for customers who sign up for a $109 per month bundle including home phone and broadband services.

The Foxtel via T-Box service is also being rolled out to ADSL customers across all capital cities (it’s already on offer in Sydney and Melbourne). According to Kinealy, 214,000 of the devices have been sold so far.

Republished from Lifehacker

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