The rights to broadcast a Formula 1 live stream through Australia are owned by Foxtel. Foxtel sub-leases the Sky Sports F1 live stream racing coverage, showing it through its Fox Sports channels. This includes the three practice sessions, the qualifying session and the race itself. The Fox Sports channels are available through Foxtel IQ, Foxtel Now and Kayo Sports.
There is one exception to this deal. Channel 10 does have the rights to broadcast every session and the race for the Melbourne F1 Grand Prix live, simulcast with Foxtel and Kayo Sports. This is the only race of the year, however, where Channel 10 will show F1 live and it cannot provide a Formula 1 live stream through the tenplay app. The network does have the rights to broadcast shortened replays and highlights of each race once it is completed.
Option 1: Watch F1 live on Kayo Sports
Despite its cheaper price, Kayo Sports offers the best viewing experience of the two services. This dedicated live sports streaming app offers a suite of innovative features that are available through your PC or Mac via a browser, on iOS and Android devices, as well as on your TV via Apple TV, Telstra TV, Android TV or ChromeCast. These features include SplitView (watching up to four channels at once), RaceView, picture-in-picture mode, Key Moments time, hide results, a futuristic Netflix-style UI, game-day hub and more.
Foxtel Now is more of your stock standard F1 live stream experience. You have an app on your device, and through it you can access the channels you are subscribed to. Foxtel Now's price is impacted by the requirement to get additional non-sporting channels before you can access the desired sports channels. This may or may not be of benefit to your particular situation.
However, without all the sports-viewing features, it doesn't have much going for it for those looking into an F1 live stream option or any of the other sports. When you compare prices, it's hard to argue against Kayo Sports being the best place to watch F1 online in Australia. It does have a handful of additional sports channels over Kayo – namely Eurosport, three premier league club channels and two Sky Racing channels – but none of those impact F1 or the other major Australian sports. You can learn more about Foxtel Now here.
How to watch an F1 Live Stream Free in Australia
Finding a free Formula 1 live stream doesn't necessarily need to take you into illegal territory. By taking advantage of both Foxtel Now and Kayo's free trial offers, you can start watching F1 without spending a cent.
Kayo offers a 14-day free trial period, which will give you the chance to watch potentially two full race weekends for free, depending one when you activate it during the season. Foxtel Now offers a shorter 10-day period period, too. Both services are easy to sign-up for an have automatic cancellation processes.
How does the Sky Sports F1 live stream work in Australia
Foxtel doesn't have a team on the ground at each F1 race of the year, so does not do a Formula 1 live stream of its own. Instead, Foxtel broadcasts the Sky Sports F1 live stream into Australia. Before and after the race, however, the Sky Sports live stream switches to a locally-broadcast F1 live stream chat show. Here, local F1 commentators look at the race from an Australian perspective, before handing over the reins to the Sky Sports live stream team working remotely. This is how the F1 live stream experience has been functioning in Australia for years.
Sky Sports F1 isn't to be confused with a Sky Racing live stream. Despite the term "racing," the Sky Racing live stream is focused on horse racing.
How to Watch Formula 1 in 4K
Sky Sports F1 coverage is shot and broadcast in 4K, which means you can watch this glorious sport in the most glorious of resolutions if you have the right equipment. That means a 4K TV and a subscription to Foxtel IQ.
Foxtel IQ is the premium service in the Foxtel range and involves the traditional set-top box setup. That means a technician will need to come to your house, install the box and cabling (and potentially a satellite), which means it isn't an instant process. However, the latest Foxtel IQ4 box does allow for 4K broadcasts.
A Foxtel IQ subscription also comes with the Foxtel Go app, which allows you to enjoy an F1 live stream experience on your mobile device at no extra cost. However, the telecommunications infrastructure isn't ready to do a 4K F1 live stream just yet.
The downside of watching F1 via Foxtel IQ is the cost. As the sports package cannot be purchased separate from the base package, you need to get a lot more channels that you may want. In addition, high-definition/4K also has an additional fee. As a result, you will be up for a minimum of $68 per month, plus the initial installation fee, to enjoy F1 in this manner. Find out more about Foxtel IQ here.
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You'd be forgiven for thinking that the name F1TV would include an Formula 1 live stream, but it doesn't. No doubt a result of the complex global broadcasting rights web, the F1TV service provides access to live timings, team audio and telemetry data from the race weekend. There's also an archive of 650 historic F1 racers to go through and documentaries. At $4.49 a month or $41.99 for the season, F1TV is certainly not short of content. However, an F1TV subscription is really only for the super fans given it offers no Formula 1 live stream.
Chris Stead is an award winning content creation and design specialist that dabbles in all subjects, but is best known for his work in technology, entertainment and gaming. When not writing, he can be found among the waves of the Northern Beaches.
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