Telstra's Mobile Foxtel Relaunches, Still Bad Value

Telstra has tweaked its Mobile Foxtel TV-to-smartphone offering several times in recent years, but it remains something of a niche offering. The latest "relaunch" makes some tweaks to the service, but there's still a nasty sting in the conditions which makes it essentially impossible to recommend.

The basics of Telstra Mobile Foxtel are this: it only works on Android and iOS smartphones that are on a Telstra account. For a monthly fee (on contract) or a weekly fee (on mobile), you gain access to a range of TV channels, mostly from Foxtel but with ABC1 and SBS1 thrown in. The channels are a mixture of live-to-air and cached content. A big part of the appeal is that watching those channels doesn't count against your monthly data allowance.

Telstra's blog post "relaunching" the service highlights two available deals: the Value pack (16 channels for $8 a month) and the Ultimate Pack (28 channels for $15 a month). We've since clarified that the Ultimate Pack+Sport for $20 a month also remains available. New subscribers get their first month free.

But whichever plan you choose, there's a vicious clause in the terms and conditions which renders Mobile Foxtel really bad value. Your usage is restricted to 200 minutes a month, and you can't watch any given channel for more than 30 minutes a day. On particularly busy days, Telstra reserves the right to cut off usage after 15 minutes.

That renders the service all but useless for watching during your commute, catching a sports match or even watching most dramas. While Telstra says you can roll over unused minutes from the 200-minute total, that's essentially meaningless if you can't watch more than 30 minutes in a day anyway.

I get that trying to offer unmetered access to video is an expensive proposition, but this kind of restriction isn't a sensible way to solve that problem. Until the available viewing time improves, I can't see Mobile Foxtel taking off.



    In practice though, this never happens. I've never been aware of reaching these limits and have used it extensively whilst travelling in the past.

    There's no contract involved - it's month-by-month - so it's worth giving a try to see whether these limits will impact you.

    Which idiot(s) came up with these restriction?

    Last edited 18/05/15 12:23 pm

    You have used it? I have just spent the last 2 hours being bounced around from foxtel to Telstra... can you tell me is it full shows? is it a continuous stream or as with the service a few years ago a cut down version on a 2-3 hour loop?

    Horrible that NO ONE at Telstra or foxtel seems to know the basics of a product with both of the company names on it.

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