Telstra’s offering refunds for AFL Live Pass users

Alex Kidman 20 October 2017

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AFL fans who felt dudded by the lack of tablet streaming options can get their money back.

Telstra has long held the mobile streaming rights for Australia's biggest sports codes, including the NRL, Netball Australia and the AFL, offering access to those codes to its customers as well as anyone willing to pay the annual subscription fee.

However, users of this year's AFL app noticed that the coverage was, to put it politely, a little smaller than it had been in previous years. Specifically, Telstra's deal with the AFL prohibited it from streaming AFL matches to devices with screen sizes larger than 7 inches, which covers the vast majority of tablets on the market these days.

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    As an example, any iPad user, whether you favour the iPad Pro 12.9 inch or even the iPad Mini wouldn't be able to stream AFL even after paying their subscription fee, even though they would have been able to do so for the 2016 season.

    To exacerbate issues, Telstra's advertising for the AFL live pass featured images displayed prominently on tablet displays. The reality for users trying to stream on tablets was that their effective screen size was shrunk down to just seven inches with black borders, leading to many dissatisfied footy fans.

    The ACCC stepped in, citing concerns around customers being either deceived by the advertising, or in some cases having resubscribed under the previous terms that allowed tablet streaming. "The ACCC was concerned that footy fans may have subscribed or renewed subscriptions to the AFL Live Pass thinking that they could continue watching live AFL matches in full-screen on a tablet, when this was not the case," ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.

    Telstra has indicated that it will process refunds for subscription customers who fill out an online form indicating their details. The refund deal only appears to apply to customers who purchased a subscription, not customers who received access to AFL Live pass through their existing Telstra Mobile Plan contract.

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