This is how you’ll watch the EPL with Optus
As kick off for the 2016/17 season of the EPL approaches, we take a look at how Optus plans to deliver a 24/7 football fix to customers.
On 4 July, Optus will officially switch on its Optus Sport service, offering eligible Optus customers access to the country’s first dedicated 24/7 football channel delivered via the Internet. While the major selling point is going to be the complete English Premier League season that starts on 13 August, Optus has also obtained the rights to highlights and a large portion of the International Champions Cup which kicks off on July 22, ensuring plenty of exciting content for fans once the station goes live.
Optus Sport marks the first time that a local provider has made a major sporting competition available exclusively online, with every match available to watch live across a multitude of devices.
The core access point will be a dedicated app for iOS (8.0 and above) or Android (4.4 and above) Optus customers, with a dedicated web portal for PC or Mac based browsers. For those wanting a big-screen experience there will also be a dedicated app for the 4th generation Apple TV, plus apps for the Optus TV with Fetch box and Fetch Mini. The iOS app will also support Airplay for those with older Apple TV devices. Our demonstration of the service was via an iPhone with an HDMI to Lightning cable, which suggests this will also be a feasible option for Optus customers.
For remote customers, Optus is also offering a dedicated satellite service that includes a Fetch-like box that can exclusively access the EPL.
Four devices can be linked to each Optus Sport account, though you can only stream to a single device at any one time.
Live and let live
According to Optus, the most important element when building the new football portal was the access to live matches. The driving force behind the entire app’s user experience is making it “one tap to live”.
The top of the app houses a featured content carousel. This will highlight every live match about to happen, and selecting it will immediately kick off the live stream. The emphasis will definitely be on Live and most recent matches, though there is scope to highlight recent episodes of the 24/7 channel’s shows or big news stories.
Below the carousel, a tabbed menu lets users select from Matches, Fixtures, Table, Results and News. All data into the app is fed live, with matches available to watch on demand a minute after the game finishes.
By default though Optus will hide match results, allowing users to watch the game at their leisure, without fear of spoilers. Viewers accessing matches via the web will be able to browse match highlights from the video’s timeline scrubber at the bottom of the screen, although again that can be switched off to avoid spoilers.
For occasions when multiple games are being played at the same time, Optus also enables multi-screen support, with a smaller, picture-in-picture window allowing viewers to watch two games simultaneously.
In addition to the live streaming of matches and the immediate catch up opportunities, Optus has also created the country’s first 24/7 football channel.
To populate the channel 24 hours a day, Optus is bringing a range of original shows to the platform. Previews, match analysis and highlights will naturally all play a part on this channel, but Optus is focused on using this original programming to create a destination for football fans.
There will be EPL news programs twice daily and a 90 minute daily show running Monday to Friday called Football Daily.
In addition, Optus is working hard on fan engagement, with two 60-minute shows live daily that will allow fans to call into the studio to ask questions, comment on games and interact with the show’s presenters.
And because everything is streamed via the internet, all shows are available in both linear format on the 24 hour channel and on demand.
- Optus is offering the 2016/17 EPL season for free when you sign up to a Premier League plan on selected Optus mobile and broadband plans before 31 July 2016.