Telstra launches data-free sports streaming apps for NRL, AFL and netball

Alex Kidman 10 February 2017

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No data charge for Telstra customers on redesigned apps for Australia’s favourite sporting codes.

The field of streaming sports rights for mobile is hotly contested, with Optus currently holding EPL and cricket rights, OVO Mobile pitching heavily on V8 Supercars, drag racing and gymnastics, and Telstra having long held the streaming rights for the ARL and NRL, as well as adding Netball Australia to the mix last year.

Telstra has today announced that customers accessing NRL, AFL or Netball games via its apps for each code will be able to do so without incurring any mobile data charges for watching. That deal applies to all Telstra mobile customers, irrespective of the plan that you’re on, including prepaid Telstra plans.

Telstra has also launched redesigned mobile apps with additional features for each code. Telstra says it had some 3.8 million users across its AFL and NRL apps last September. Or in other words, sports users like apps.

On the AFL side, this will include Women’s AFL matches, targeted news feeds based on your team affiliation and the ability to watch matches full screen or in a windowed mode on mobile devices. If you love AFL stats, the app will now serve you additional details on team records and individual players as well.

Telstra’s AFL apps will also branch out into 18 distinct club-specific apps, each of which will provide individual, club-based approaches to information, fixtures and fan-specific content. You’ll still need the core Live app to watch games, however, as with other codes.

If NRL is your ball sport of choice, the updated NRL Live app will integrate bunker decisions, improved player stats, and, like the AFL, there will also be distinct club-specific apps. Telstra says it has made 120 improvements to the NRL app over last year’s release, including faster sign-on for Telstra customers redeeming the free access offer.

Netball Australia is Telstra’s newest sports partner, and its coverage of the sport will encompass both a Netball Live app, as well as Telstra TV app. On the Telstra TV front, two games per round will be broadcast live in full HD with interactive statistics.

All games will be accessible on Telstra TV with the option to hide scores if you miss a game but don’t want results spoiled. Chromecast streaming will also be supported for the Netball app, so you can more easily view games on a larger display.

Screen casting of matches is not an option open for NRL or AFL fans, due to the existing broadcast rights deals with free to air and Foxtel, where Telstra’s rights deal means that you’re constrained to watching over mobile on devices under 12 inches in size only.

While the official announcement of the new apps took place today, Telstra actually launched them to market over the past week and a half.

Telstra claimed that it has already seen a 359% increase in app redemption in the first week of availability compared to the previous year of AFL and NRL app availability. According to the AFL, some 2.6 million minutes of the women’s AFL fixture last week were streamed over the app.

If you’re not a Telstra customer you can still access the apps in full, albeit obviously without the data free provision, and with subscription fees applicable for each code.

iOS users can download the new AFL app here , the new NRL app here and the Netball Live app here.

If you’re an Android user, the Netball Live app is here, the AFL app is here and the NRL app can be downloaded here.

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