One of Australia’s leading pay TV providers, Foxtel was founded in 1995 as a joint venture between Fox Media and Telstra. It started by offering a 20-channel service to Australians, delivered by Telstra’s coaxial network. After acquiring the customer base of the now-defunct Galaxy TV service, it was also able to offer satellite and cable to subscribers.
Over the years, Foxtel grew rapidly and continued to add premium channels to its package line-ups that included popular television shows from around the world. On Fox8, The Simpsons and Family Guy consistently rate well, while other channels like A&E bring in 85,000 viewers with its US-syndicated shows like Pawn Stars and Storage Wars. By 2011 Foxtel had become the largest pay television operator in Australia, taking up over 30% of the market with 1.65 million subscribers.
In early 2015, Foxtel began branching out of pay TV and into the broadband world, launching Foxtel Broadband bundle configurations. Originally, Foxtel Broadband used Telstra's cable and ADSL networks to offer broadband services, but in late 2016 the company announced it would also offer NBN connections.
Foxtel has long been known as the home for premium television in Australia. Whether you prefer popular sitcoms or the latest premium HBO content, Foxtel has secured the rights to some of the very best small-screen content.
Foxtel offers a full suite of services, including an on-demand streaming option. Those who are looking for something different from a traditional Foxtel connection can access its premium TV and movie library via its subscription service Foxtel Now. Read on for more information on Foxtel's addition to the growing streaming market.
Foxtel Now is an alternative to the traditional Foxtel subscription. It's a video streaming platform that allows you to view Foxtel through an Internet connection with a no-lock-in contract. Because there's no need for special hardware installation, you can come and go as you please.
Foxtel offers a huge number of channels through its pay TV service, grouped together into packages. The regular quality of Foxtel channels is standard definition, with the company now finally offering HD on available channels as part of your monthly package rather than as an add on. A new channel dedicated to 4K content also arrived October 2018, available exclusively to Sports HD or Platinum HD channel packs subscribers.
Here are the channels on offer through Foxtel's service.
Add-on price (monthly)
Sports HD Pack
FOX Cricket, FOX League, FOX Sports 503, FOX Footy, FOX Sports 505, FOX Sports 506, FOX Sports MORE, beIN Sports 1, beIN Sports 2, beIN Sports 3, ESPN, ESPN2, Eurosport, FOX Sports Ultra HD
FOX8, FOX Hits, BBC UKTV, Arena, MTV, Universal Channel, FOX Crime, FOX SHOWCASE, FOX One, BBC First, 13th Street, TLC, E!, Fox Classics, FOX Funny, Lifestyle, Discovery Channel, National Geographic Channel, BBC Earth, Disney Junior, Nick Jr, Boomerang, MTV Music, MTV Dance, [V], MAX, Country Music Channel, Foxtel Music, Smooth Arts, FOX Sports News, SKY Racing 1, Sky Thoroughbred Central, Sky News, Sky News Extra, Sky News Weather, Sky News UK, BBC World News, FOX News Channel, CNN,EXPO Channel, CGTN, CGTN Documentary, NHK World, Aurora, Bloomberg Television, CNBC, Al Jazeera, Daystar, SBN, Russia Today, TVSN, ACCTV, TRT World, Hillsong
Movies HD pack
Foxtel Movies Premiere,Foxtel Movies Kids,Foxtel Movies Family, Foxtel Movies Action, Foxtel Movies Comedy, Foxtel Movies Drama, Foxtel Movies Thriller, Foxtel Movies Hits, Foxtel Movies Greats, Foxtel Movies Romance, Foxtel Movies Ultra HD
Cartoon Network, Disney Channel, CBeebies, Nickelodeon, Discovery Kids
*Foxtel Plus is a mandatory pack that you must be subscribed to
Whether you're craving global sports and news coverage or you're looking to watch Foxtel in more rooms than one, there are a number of add-ons that you can tack on at the checkout, each with an additional monthly fee.
Additional monthly cost
Standard Netflix plan
Greek television and news
Italian television and news
Sky Racing +
(Requires Sports Pack) Your equestrian destination on Foxtel
Foxtel's monthly magazine delivered to your door.
Multiroom Foxtel iQ4
*Once-off $125 install fee applies
Stream via Foxtel GO on your device to another big screen TV
In order to watch Foxtel's pay TV service, you're going to need a Foxtel personal video recorder (PVR) box, otherwise known as a set-top box. Depending on your package or budget, that means either the Foxtel iQ3 or 4K-enabled iQ4.
Meanwhile, the iQ3 is the current premium offering from Foxtel, with three times the recording space of the iQ2, plus intelligent suggestions based on your viewing habits, the ability to return to the start of a program with a single button press and the ability to record three channels while watching a fourth.
Here's a full breakdown of the Foxtel iQ PVR specs.
In addition to the iQ boxes, Foxtel customers are also able to access many of the channels in their cable plan on a mobile device using the Foxtel app. Two devices can simultaneously use this streaming app, with up to three devices linked per account. Compatible devices include iPads, iPhones and Android devices, PC and Mac.
The following is a list of frequently asked questions about Foxtel.
Foxtel Now is Foxtel's on-demand streaming option. Similar to Netflix and Stan, Foxtel Now allows you to select TV shows and movies from its library to stream on-demand.
Foxtel iQ refers to the cable box you will need in order to receive the service. This allows you to access the cable service and record programs at the same time to view at a later date. You can also pause, play and rewind live television.
There are two different cable box versions currently available: the iQ2 and iQ3. For a comprehensive run-down on the differences, see the Foxtel Hardware section above.
In order to enjoy all of the features of Foxtel your TV box should be connected to the Internet. You can run it without but your pay-per-view video library will be more limited.
Foxtel deals and bundles
How does Foxtel compare?
Wondering how Foxtel compares with streaming services like Netflix and Stan? We've done the hard work for you in the table below.
Nick Broughall is a global group publisher across shopping, travel, tech, streaming and reviews at Finder. An award-winning journalist with over 15 years' experience writing about technology, Nick has edited leading tech publications, including Gizmodo, TechRadar and T3 Magazine, as well as contributing to CNET, the Sydney Morning Herald, Lifehacker, news.com.au and many more. In 2016 he was awarded the Best Reviewer title at the 14th Annual IT Journalism Awards and has been a finalist for Best Reviewer, Best Consumer Technology Journalist and Best News Journalist on multiple occasions. Nick has a Bachelor of Media and finds joy in solving problems with technology.
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