Aussie pay TV service announced for Xbox 360

Foxtel launches partnership with Microsoft to bring streaming subscription television to Microsoft's console in late 2010.

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The console multimedia tug of war between Sony and Microsoft has heated up in Australia recently, with the last salvo being Sony's launch earlier this week of its new video delivery service for the PlayStation Network. Microsoft has bounced back quickly, however, today unveiling a partnership with subscription TV provider Foxtel to stream a limited selection of channels to the Xbox 360 through a new service called Foxtel by Xbox Live.

The new service will allow Xbox 360 owners with a Live Gold subscription to stream specific Foxtel channels to the console and bypass the set-top box normally associated with pay TV. Other details are scarce at this stage, with no confirmation on pricing for the subscription required for Foxtel by Xbox Live. But Microsoft has stated via a press release that it plans on launching the service in the fourth quarter of 2010.

An existing Foxtel subscription isn't required to use the service, but it does allow current Foxtel subscribers the ability to turn their consoles into an additional set-top box for specific channels. The confirmed channels that Xbox 360 owners will be able to access are Fox Sports, Discovery, Nickelodeon, Disney, and MTV.

At a Foxtel press conference this morning, Microsoft representatives said that the company was in talks with two Australian Internet Service Providers to offer Foxtel by Xbox Live unmetered. One of the biggest hurdles facing video streaming services in Australia is the download cap that nearly all Aussie broadband providers place on their subscribers.

Stay tuned to GameSpot AU for more details on Foxtel by Xbox Live as they arise.

Discussion

22 comments
isshiah
isshiah

sounds great. the only problem is my download cap...lousy optus and its 7gb max. a few hours on youtube and its gone.

St3yr
St3yr

@ Baruday: Ppshhh...forget the AFL - that gives me the s#$ts when those live games get put right in the middle of a V8 telecast! Just gimme NRL and V8's and I'll be pleased k thx...

realone2005
realone2005

Damn i love getting Xbox Live unmetered with iinet. even then still got my monthly 150GB quota which i never go over.

yabbal
yabbal

If I can get access to Sci-Fi channel for $20 per month, I'm interested, otherwise I'll stick with buying DVD's.

zxssded
zxssded

whoever wants to see the speed at which austrlaian downlaods...go onto youtube and right click. thete should be a check speed button there. its quiet sad how sad australia is compaired to the rest of the world....a very sad fact

ButtonBasherBW
ButtonBasherBW

Streaming over the internet? Yeah, that part is what's going to make this fall over. Australia needs to pick up it's speed before than happens. Even 'normal' quality videos streamed over Live (the previews and so on you see from time to time) don't run too well.

papouse84
papouse84

@ veeks Yeah I agree, it's probably best to reserve judgement until we see some pricing plans. I can understand why it's not part of a Live Gold subscription though. They'd have to raise the price so everyone pays for it, and I certainly wouldn't want to pay for it if I wasn't going to use it. I'm curious to see who the second ISP will be other than Telstra Bigpond...

AlphaCommando
AlphaCommando

"Gimme all ur moniez nao lol" - Microsoft Xbox 360 representative.

Nintendo_Man
Nintendo_Man moderator

What i want is the chance to choose what channels i want (or different packages) otherwise its useless.

LifeForms
LifeForms

you can get the same thing in the UK with "Sky" on xbox..... but is expensive it will be over here too!!!

veeks
veeks

@papouse84 , My comment was a little tounge-in-cheek. Don't get me wrong, I think it is great that companies are trying to get the most out of their products, I just wish there wasn't an extra cost added to every new feature. We are already paying for the "premium" xbox live experience + internet service (if your download limit will allow it) and now we are offered a four channel pay-tv option. That seems to be a huge circle to go around just to watch television shows on your television set.

xblane
xblane

I'm a firm believer of "you buy a console for the exclusives"... ie, I'm a Nintendo man because of Zelda. I'm sure there are lots of Halo fans that are the reason the Xbox continues to thrive... However, I have since bought a PS3 with PlayTV as it was simply the best/cheapest way to get a PVR, Blueray player and a bonus game console. Until now, the only valid reason I could see for an Xbox over a PS3 was Halo/Fable (or another exclusive). But to me, this looks like a promissing feature... assuming the price is reasonable.

papouse84
papouse84

@veeks I'm a bit confused by your comment; are you saying you'd prefer that companies don't innovate?

sonic0491
sonic0491

I love how they announce this the day after Sony brings out theirs. Its like "Um.. Oh... Yeah... Australia! Uh..We care about you too! Here see!"

benboz
benboz

I already got foxtel with all channels. I don't need this.

veeks
veeks

I love seeing the inventive methods these companies come up with to take our money.

junor69
junor69

so i have to pay for live and then pay for foxtel hmmm no thanks

SuprSaiyanRockr
SuprSaiyanRockr

Streaming? Damn. I'll have to wait until Aussie broadband picks up.

mitsmirage
mitsmirage

Great idea, I don't have Foxtel and wouldn't mind seeing some of the sport and movies on Foxtel.

smooth40
smooth40

Just give me NRL and the games live and this is the greatest deal ever. Wont get my hopes up though, probably some useless re runs of old soaps.

baruday
baruday

Unmetered Fox Sports for AFL could come in very handy. Hopefully the price isn't over-the-top, probs will be though