Foxtel's two apps offer two very different viewing experiences. Let's break them down.
Foxtel has been upping the ante when it comes to on-demand video content. Foxtel Go and Foxtel Now are two new reasons to sign-up – but which is right for you?
Before we get started, remember that Foxtel Go is included with any monthly subscription, and Foxtel Now is an extra paid service that can be used as an addition to, or instead of, your regular Foxtel service. Of course, if you're not an existing Foxtel customer you can just get Foxtel Now, and you will also get Foxtel Go as part of your subscription.
The real question is whether Foxtel Now is worth the investment for you as an existing customer, or not. We’re going to try to answer that question, and of course, show you how to get the most of your Foxtel Go service.
About the author
Matt Sayer is a writer covering the latest tech, telco and video game news at finder.com.au. In his downtime from helping Aussies make informed decisions on their broadband, mobile phone, and streaming video plans, he likes exploring rich video game worlds and kicking back with a good book.
Comparison at a glance
- Standalone service: Does not require Foxtel iQ3/iQ2 subscription
- Wide device compatibility: Mobile, desktop, video game consoles, Foxtel Now box, Chromecast, smart TVs and more
- Price: Channel packs starting at $10 per month
- Installation/hardware fee: $0 installation with the option to purchase a Foxtel Now box for a once off fee of $99
- Channels and packages: Foxtel Now allows you to add and remove packages every month so you're never locked into one package arrangement
- Cancellation: Foxtel Now has no cancellation fees
- Free trial: Two-week free trial
Foxtel GO (Foxtel App)
- Companion app: Requires a regular Foxtel iQ3 subscription to use
- Limited device compatibility: Apple, Android, PC and Mac
- Price: Free app but it requires a regular Foxtel subscription (Min. cost starting at $254)
- Installation/hardware: Minimum $50 equipment fee and $100 standard install fee for new residential customers
- Channels and packages: Same channels included in your Foxtel iQ3 subscription
- Cancellation: Cancellation fees apply if you exit your Foxtel iQ3 subscription.
- Free trial: No free trial for Foxtel iQ3 subscription
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What is Foxtel Now?
Foxtel Now is an Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) streaming service that is designed to get Foxtel into the homes of people who aren’t convinced by lock-in contracts, installation fees or the need to buy extra hardware. Like other IPTV streaming services, you’ll need a fast, steady Internet connection and a big enough data allowance to make the most of your subscription.
The recommended minimum data speed is 3.0Mbps.
The subscription starts at $10 per month and includes the mobile service, Foxtel Go, for free. From there, customers can personalize their own subscription (similar to how "regular" Foxtel works) by adding genre packs, such as sport or drama.
You can watch Foxtel Now content on your Smart TV, Xbox One, computer or any Internet-enabled device.
What's Foxtel GO?
Foxtel Go comes included with your Foxtel monthly subscription (including a Foxtel Now subscription). It's an app for mobile devices that allows you to take your Foxtel with you and watch some of your subscribed content on the go.
There are some real advantages to Foxtel Go: It adds value to your monthly subscription and allows you to watch your favorite content wherever you are. Lots of tech reviewers have praised Foxtel Go’s intuitive and user-friendly interface and the app’s functionality.
We also like that there is no need to sign up for anything else or to take out your card. Simply download the free app and login using your Foxtel account details.
Get up-to-date with everything you’ve missed with the handy catch-up features – which includes content from channels unavailable via the live stream. Seeing as it's free, and just a download away for pre-existing Foxtel customers, you may decide that Foxtel Go is a great addition to the service.
Value for Money: Foxtel Now vs Foxtel Go
Foxtel Go (being free and all) is pretty good value for money. Its inclusion in Foxtel’s monthly subscription bundles really keeps them in the streaming game and makes a regular Foxtel subscription better value for money.
Foxtel Now is good value for money – if it's right for you. If you’re happy with your set-top box, there's really no reason to make the switch to Foxtel Now. However, if you're looking to upgrade to a Smart TV, or you’re looking to get Foxtel for the first time, and want to skip all the installation hassle, then Foxtel Now might be a good choice.
How much does Foxtel Now cost? You can build your Foxtel Now subscription by bundling genres. Docos, Lifestyle and Kids all cost $10 each. Drama and Pop cost $15 each but can be purchased together for $25 per month. There also premium Sport and Movie packs that cost $29 and $20, respectively.
We’ve compared some costs below – but don’t forget that if you need to buy a new device to get the most out of the service then you'll need to factor in its cost, too. That’s of course if you weren’t going to buy it, anyway.
Don’t forget data costs. This goes especially for mobile devices – but if you have a limited data plan at home or on your device, the cost of your subscription could be much more than you expect. Do yourself a favour and double check your data allowance before you start to use the service. Excess data charges aren’t pretty.
|Foxtel Now||Foxtel Go|
|How many channels||Build your own with genre packs (similar to the way regular Foxtel subscription works.)||It depends on your current Foxtel subscription – you will only be able to view channels you are already subscribed to.|
|Maximum number of devices||Five (two at once)||Three (two at once)|
|Monthly Cost||Build your own genre bundle: Docos, Lifestyle, Kids at $10 each and Drama and Pop at $15 each.||Free with a Foxtel subscription of any kind.|
|Extras available?||Add premium packs on top: Sport for $29 and Movies for $20.|
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Foxtel Now is pretty easy to sign up for – it’s meant to be Foxtel’s no-strings-attached product. To sign up (for the trial and for a subscription) visit the Foxtel website and click "Get Foxtel Play". Click on "Start your two week trial" if you want to take it for a spin first, otherwise continue to the channel selection. You'll select your preferred genre packs during the signup process which will determine your monthly cost.
When you’ve finished registration, download the app, sign in and start watching.
Foxtel Go is simple to use and even simpler to sign up for. All you need is your Foxtel ID and password to get started. Simply download the app from the Foxtel website and enter in your details when prompted. You can register up to three devices at any one time and you can change your devices over once a month.
Ease of Use: Foxtel Now vs Foxtel Go
Both Foxtel Go and Foxtel Now have been praised for the design and the user-friendly interface of their applications. Both have also been criticised for buffering issues and connection problems. It's vital to remember that, as with any other IPTV or streaming service, the quality of your connection is vital to your viewing experience. A bad connection will mean a bad service.
If you’re having problems, try out these places for tips and ideas for how to improve the service, or to see other users’ experiences in comparison to your own:
- There is an active Foxtel troubleshoot community available via the Foxtel website. The forum covers common problems and fixes.
- Whirlpool forums are also a good place to go for advice
- Foxtel’s customer helpline is available 9am–7pm AEST, Monday–Friday
Want to take your Internet TV for a spin before you sign up? We hear you. Technically speaking Foxtel Go’s "free trial" lasts forever because it’s free with a subscription. But when it comes to Foxtel Now it might be a good idea to try before you buy to see how well your device or your Internet connection works with the service.
|Foxtel Now||Foxtel Go|
|Free Trial?||Yes, a two-week free trial available.||Try it out to see if you like it, but Foxtel Go is free with a subscription.|
While Foxtel Go comes as a free inclusion with your Foxtel subscription, not all channels are supported live. Remember that a lot of the channels that aren’t available "live" on Foxtel Go are available through the "catch-up" feature.
With Foxtel Now, you will only have access to the channels you subscribe to.
|Channels||Foxtel Now||Foxtel Go|
|111 Greats||Available||Catch-up Only|
|The Lifestyle Channel||Available||Live/Catch-up|
|Fox Sports||Available||Live Only|
|The Disney Channel||Available||Live/Catch-up|
Availability: Foxtel Now vs Foxtel Go
To get the most out of both Foxtel Now and Foxtel Go (and to avoid unnecessary data costs) you'll need to make sure you have a sufficient monthly data allowance. Streaming video eats up a lot of data, and if you’re on a limited plan, you may find yourself spending much more than you want at the end of the month. You will also need a stable Internet connection to avoid common streaming annoyances such as buffering for long periods.
If you think you need to upgrade your data plan, or switch to a different ISP, do your research first to find the best provider.
|What you’ll need||Foxtel Now||Foxtel Go|
|Connection Speed||Minimum 3.0 Mbps||Minimum 3.0 Mbps|
|Data Allowance||Depends on your usage, but unlimited is best if you plan to watch a lot.||Depends on your usage, but unlimited is best if you plan to watch a lot.|
|Devices||Internet-enabled device (Smart TV, XBOX etc.)||Mobile device (phone, tablet, etc.)|
|A Foxtel Account||Build your own stand-alone Now account , or add it to your Foxtel subscription.||Free with your Now or regular Foxtel subscription.|
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Foxtel Now is a streaming video-on-demand service that streams selected Foxtel content whenever you need. However, Foxtel Now's catalogue changes on a week-to-week basis and most TV series are only streamed at 2-3 episodes at a time. Content will occasionally disappear from services like hayu, Prime Video, Stan and Netflix but nowhere near as often as Foxtel Now.
Device compatibility: Foxtel Now vs Foxtel Go
It’s no good signing up for a new service or spending time getting familiar with it, if you’re not absolutely sure it will be compatible with the devices you use. Remember that the Foxtel Now service is available on mobile devices (tablets and smartphones) via Foxtel Go.
You can register a maximum of three devices at once with a Foxtel Now account.
You can register a maximum of three devices with a Foxtel Go account, and have two of them running at once.
|Device supported||Foxtel Now||Foxtel GO|
|iPad||2 or above (iOS 6)||2 or above (iOS 6)|
|iPhone||4 or above (iOS 6)||4 or above (iOS 6)|
|iPod||5 or above (iOS 6)||5 or above (iOS 6)|
|Samsung GALAXY||S3, S4, S5, Note 2, Note 3, Note 4 Edge (Jellybean 4.1– Lollipop 5.1)||S3, S4, S5, Note 2, Note 3, Note 4 Edge (Jellybean 4.1– Lollipop 5.1)|
|Samsung GALAXY Tablets||Note 10.1, Tab2 10.1, Tab3 7", Tab3 8", Tab3 10.1, Tab Pro 10.1, Tab Pro 8.4, Tab S, Tab 4, Note 10.1 (2014), Note 4 or Note 8" (Jellybean 4.1– Lollipop 5.1)||Note 10.1, Tab2 10.1, Tab3 7", Tab3 8", Tab3 10.1, Tab Pro 10.1, Tab Pro 8.4, Tab S, Tab 4, Note 10.1 (2014), Note 4 or Note 8" (Jellybean 4.1– Lollipop 5.1)|
|LG G3||(Jellybean 4.1– Lollipop 5.1)||(Jellybean 4.1– Lollipop 5.1)|
|HTC One||M9, M9 (Jellybean 4.1– Lollipop 5.1)||M9, M9 (Jellybean 4.1– Lollipop 5.1)|
|Sony Xperia||Z1, Z2 Phone or Z2 Tablet, Xperia C3, Xperia Z3, Xperia Z3 Compact, Xperia Z3 Tablet (Jellybean 4.1 – Lollipop 5.1)||Z1, Z2 Phone or Z2 Tablet, Xperia C3, Xperia Z3, Xperia Z3 Compact, Xperia Z3 Tablet (Jellybean 4.1 – Lollipop 5.1)|
|Google Nexus||Nexus 5, Nexus 9 (Jellybean 4.1 – Lollipop 5.1)||Nexus 5, Nexus 9 (Jellybean 4.1 – Lollipop 5.1)|
|Mac OSX||10.6, 10.7 (Snow Leopard and Lion) with Safari version 5 or above.||10.6, 10.7 (Snow Leopard and Lion)|
|PC||XP Service Pack 2 or higher (Internet Explorer 8 or above)||XP Service Pack 2 or higher (Internet Explorer 8 or above)|
|Samsung Smart TVs & BluRay Payers||All models of 2012– 2014 TVs, any Smart Hub enabled 2012– 2013 model Blu-Ray Player / Home Theatre System.||n/a|
|LG Smart TV||Select 2013 models||n/a|
|Sony Smart TVs||2014 models||n/a|
|XBOX||XBOX ONE and XBOX 360||n/a|
|Sony Playstation||PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4||n/a|
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