Foxtel has finally come up with options to deal with the NetFlix / Stan phenomenon that has destroyed its customer base and made it appear as a dinosaur in the digital age.
‘Foxtel Now’ is being touted as a complete and revolutionary overhaul of the Foxtel system, empowering users to tailor their package and choose the channels they want, and none of those they don’t.
However, the reality has a lot more to do with dragons. The hit series ‘Game of Thrones’ will be back in a few weeks, and what should have been Foxtel’s cash cow, has instead made global headlines for all the wrong reasons over the last few seasons – Australians topping the charts as the audience most likely to pirate the series, a habit which has continued, much to the chagrin of global content creators and distributors.
So how do we know this is about Game of Thrones?
It’s included in the entry level package. For just $15 per month, users can grab the ‘Foxtel Now Pop package,’ and get their favourite shows, including GOT.The new service will be very similar to its online competitors in that users will be able to download an application and watch up to 16,000 shows on their laptop or handheld device. Foxtel is also coming up with a hardware solution that will incorporate Google Chromecast, and allow a more elegant connection to traditional television; much like Netflix and Stan do with AppleTV.
As with any new product, timing is critical, and Foxtel has planned their move perfectly. Not only will Game of Thrones come out shortly, but also many people are becoming frustrated at the limited content available on other services. It remains to be seen the impact this will have on piracy in Australia, but there will undoubtedly be a significant uptake of the new Foxtel product, at least as long as Game of Thrones is on. This is an important point also, with Foxtel now offering no contracts people can grab Foxtel for the time their favourite series, sports season or movie is on for. It’s hitting Netflix where they are at their best and is a well-timed strike.