Rebuilding Foxtel: The 500-Person Army Fighting Netflix


Foxtel is slipping. Slipping in the minds of you and I: streaming users who aggressively pursue new technology. It's slipping ever closer to the proverbial black hole of irrelevance by clinging onto its old-world set-top box products while also tacking on a few piecemeal streaming services on the side in the form of Go, Play and Presto. That's the story you know. The story you don't is far more interesting. "We haven't so much turned the great ship Foxtel around," Mike Ivanchenko, Director of Product, tells me over a coffee. "We built a brand new ship next to the old one."

***

The Problem

You don't have to scroll down for long on the comments section of any blog, news website or forum to find someone with something bad to say about Foxtel.

The comments all touch on the same points, too. Foxtel is seen as a corporate behemoth, scared of the NBN, resistant to change and only interested in squeezing as many dollars out of its dying empire as possible.

Here are a few we plucked from the comments of this very website:

"Foxtel has been ripping off Australians for years...I hope Netflix crushes them."

Or...

"I still don't think Foxtel quite gets it..."

And...

"I'll never be paying for Foxtel out of principle."

And perhaps the worst one:

"Foxtel...nobody cares."

This is the problem. The challenge. The good ship Foxtel has a bad reputation, and it's high time that changed. Especially given that Foxtel is now staring directly down the barrel of Netflix: the great vanquisher of cable companies the world over.

***

Netflix brings with it a unique set of challenges for Foxtel. For the longest time, the pay TV provider has focussed on beefing up its catalogue to give customers little to no choice but to subscribe to a box-based product. Wrapping up content from HBO and Showtime into its own little world means that if people want to watch the hot new shows, they have to pay through the nose to get it.

But Foxtel's technology left customers with a bad taste in their mouths. Why should they have to subscribe to a new piece of tech that may not fit into their lives? In 2015, we have tablets, laptops and smartphones that come with us, and we expect our content to do that too. Technology took a back seat to content for too long, and Foxtel started to pay the price with digital natives.

Hundreds of thousands of Australians began storming the US marketplace looking for a way to access Netflix, and now that the service has launched in Australia a significant percentage of the Foxtel's existing users are thinking about cutting the cord. It was time to bring technology up front.

Enter the iQ3.

The iQ3 is a major departure from previous models, simply because it melds both satellite services with new cable and IPTV functionality. New features lean heavily on the fact that the iQ3 can be connected to the ‘net.

The new box is crammed full of tuners so you can record three shows at once while watching a fourth, and also pack in free-to-air channels as well. Thanks to that IP connectivity, you now do a whole bunch of funky internet-related stuff with your new box.

It has a new feature called Start Over, which allows you to jump back to the beginning of any show after it has commenced, and a similar feature called Look Back which lets the users take a look at the previous 24 hours and select any show to stream via the IPTV connection. Streaming is unmetered on Foxtel Broadband and Telstra BigPond, but the box notifies you of the usage you’ll be going through no matter who you’re with to give clarity over the data you’ll be chewing through.

Streaming options go deeper than just catch-up, however.

A centralised synopsis page has been built for each show and film, which analyses packages that users have on their service and pushes the cheapest and most convenient options for them to stream a title directly to the box. The synopsis page will push the Boxsets channel, on-demand streaming and live viewing, depending on what’s available at that time and in that customer’s package.

"The old Foxtel was an old, standard, cast-iron broadcast engine. It was all about content, broadcast, play-out, satellite uplinks and standard set-top boxes. The way we built them is inherently embedded, difficult to upgrade. We can now do things our customers want much faster for them when it comes to deploying new products or functionality."

As far as connectivity and hardware is concerned, the box comes with its own 802.11ac connectivity and has been tweaked to work perfectly with the new Foxtel Media Gateway Wi-Fi modem you get if you’re a Foxtel Broadband subscriber.

Futhermore, the new Foxtel remote doesn’t communicate via Infrared, instead pairing to the box using Bluetooth so you can point and click anywhere.

The box packs in a new 1TB hard drive which Foxtel says can hold 172 hours of HD content, or 345 hours of SD content. Sadly, that hard drive isn’t upgradeable. There’s even a label on the back that stresses the fact that “no user serviceable parts” are inside the unit if you crack it open.

The iQ3 isn't where the spotlight ought to be, however. Standing in the wings are thousands of people from all over the world who have taken Foxtel from the ground up and turned it into a modern streaming company with a content catalogue that overshadows its competitors. It's the construction of a new platform alongside an old one, and it's been going for five years.

Brett Paton, head of Technology Development for Foxtel sits weary in his seat as he talks to me about the project. He's weary, but victorious, knowing that customers will soon get to use their new masterpiece.

"Five years ago there was a twinkle in the eye [about modernising Foxtel's platform]. Two years after that, we did the business case. People started cutting code right after that," he said.

"There are more than 500 people in 11 countries who have worked to re-build this thing. When people think around here that there must be a lot of activity going on at Foxtel, there's also 500 people in 11 countries working on it."

"It's not so much a big ship to turn around here at Foxtel. It's a big ship to build another big ship alongside it so you can jump onto it."

Foxtel describes re-working the platform that iQ3 runs on as similar to “changing the engines of a plane mid-flight”. It had to carefully execute a modernisation program that would see it completely change not only the way content was delivered, but the way Foxtel worked internally as a business.

Mike Ivanchenko, Director of Product, is positively beaming when he talks about the new platform.

"This platform will allow us to deliver on the promise of what you want, where you want, when you want it. And that includes things like starting in one location, finishing in another, being able to share content with family and people who are part of your subscription, the whole idea that whatever and however you want to be entertained, we will serve for you and meet people at their level on their needs.

"That's been a massive shift, but what it does allow us to do is to fulfill that role of the [content] aggregator. Now, I don't have to do more work because we have to [service] such-and-such device," he said.

All of a sudden, I'm twinkling too: this is what we've wanted from Foxtel for all these years.

"We've done a lot of work with studios and content owners on what 'restart' means when viewing and those kind of things," Mike Ivanchenko tells me.

Gathering the content metadata alone required a whole team to change the way it thought about their day-to-day job of working with rights holders over the last two years, and it's still a constant struggle, he adds:

"There's a lot of rights [management], a lot of legal to go through with rights-holders. It's massive. Across the business there have been a lot of people involved in making it happen. Collecting the metadata for launch [product posters, synopses, etc.]...meant we had to build a platform that allows us to aggregate all of the sources of metadata to allow us to create that unified view for a program or movie or whatever.

"That team works all the way up the studio chain to get those assets and make sure they're in the right formats and images and resolutions and that they're localised. It's ginormous. The other [challenge] is that the same movie will have umpteen IDs according to each release that it's had. We will get a poster, but then we have to confirm it's for the right release date for the one we're putting into the system.

"That attention to detail matters. That's a good example of all the change we've had through to bring Foxtel to life."

"This platform will allow us to deliver on the promise of what you want, where you want, when you want it. And that includes things like starting in one location, finishing in another, being able to share content with family and people who are part of your subscription, the whole idea that whatever and however you want to be entertained, we will serve for you and meet people at their level on their needs. "

That metadata then needs to be delivered, and to manage it all there's a dedicated tuner inside the iQ3 box specifically for serving it. Data delivery and content metadata is more important to Foxtel than ever. That's something Ivanchenko wants to clean up as soon as possible:

"I've read a lot of stuff that asks if Foxtel is afraid of the NBN. You can see from this box that as far as I'm concerned, the better internet access everyone has, the better our product will be. If there was ever any evidence of Foxtel absolutely embracing [over-the-top, IP-based] delivery, we've just put our primary platform on it," he boasts.

Brett adds that the new Foxtel is also geared to people with low-speed connections too:

"We have done a lot to make it useful for a whole range of connectivity speeds. Someone on Cable internet with 100Mbps is going to fly [with iQ3], but people in Kalgoorlie or somewhere with just 1Mbps will get a reasonable experience. It's got features in there about buffering downloads [for consistent playback]. You can adjust that buffer so that while content might take a little while longer to start, you're more likely to get to the end of the program without it buffering," he says.

***

Mike and Brett talk my ear off about content delivery for about 30 minutes in the foyer of Foxtel. The pair are so excited about what their teams have built, but what does it all mean in a nutshell, I ask Mike.

"The headline is," he says with a wry smile, "that we have taken Foxtel from being a broadcaster, to being a content aggregator. What we [now] do is delivery-agnostic. We have to make sure we can provide the content to customers however they want to receive it. So rather than where we've had a real focus first and foremost on broadcast and then tack things on, you see with the iQ3 the interface is designed to be about the shows, rather than how the shows are delivered. Broadcast and VOD content are now on the same page. In order to do that, we've had to totally change the way we view content. The systems that have had to be built and put in place to generate, store and serve all of that metadata is huge. It touches every part of the way Foxtel works."

Brett pipes up, saying that "the old Foxtel was an old, standard, cast-iron broadcast engine. It was all about content, broadcast, play-out, satellite uplinks and standard set-top boxes. The way we built them is inherently embedded, difficult to upgrade.

"We can now do things our customers want much faster for them [when it comes to deploying new products or functionality]."

The promise of the iQ3, Brett adds, is the promise of a box that can work together with your tablets, laptops and smartphones in future, rather than just being another dumb box plugged into the wall.

""We could adopt the concept of a media gateway into the home [with the iQ3]. It has 8 cable tuners in it and we use a number of those for recording and viewing but there's one dedicated specifically for metadata, and then there are a balance of them reserved for other things. We could have different things in the home. We could stream the content from the [hard] disk to your iPad in the home, but also allow that iPad to use one of those tuners in its own right. That's the concept of a network tuner for the home. It's kind of like Slingbox on steroids," Brett says.

The company isn't jamming all that functionality into the iQ3 at launch, however. Brett adds that the company needs to sit and talk to its customers to find out what they want and when they want it. You can tell that they're champing at the bit to put it into the market and talk about it some more.

For Foxtel, the iQ3 is like that final scene in JJ Abrams' Star Trek reboot. The Captain Kirk screams down to the engine room for more power as the Enterprise edges closer and closer to oblivion in the hands of a black hole. All of a sudden, Scotty comes up with an idea to create a massive explosion at the event horizon, which the ship then must outrun. As with all action films, the explosion engulfs the ship, and you're not quite sure if the ship is going to escape the crushing black oblivion.

Foxtel has just ejected its core and created this massive explosion within its company by jettisoning the idea of a broadcast Pay TV product. A new core is to be installed based around fast internet connectivity, content recommendation engines, anytime viewing and a beautiful new interface.

Whether the good ship Foxtel can escape the ensuing explosion and fly away from the black hole of irrelevance remains to be seen. That plot twist is up to its customers.


Comments

    If you can record with it, isn't that a form of pirating and could it be used in defense in court if you pirated a show that has already played on IQ3. Any argument about not seeing ads on a pirated copy could be argued that you've seen every ad on TV a million times over.

      Dude, didnt you know whoever gets the privilege of having first comment on a story about Foxtel on Giz has to say:

      "Go f*ck yourself Foxtel"

      Same rule applies for articles about Tony Abbott.

        You took the words outa my mouth!

        Dude, didnt you know whoever gets the privilege of having first comment on a story about Foxtel on Giz has to say:

        "Go f*ck yourself Foxtel"

        Same rule applies for articles about Tony Abbott.

        No, it isn't a privilege. That's just your knee jerk reaction to anything attached to News Corp or the coalition.

        I don't always agree with @pepee63 but a least he/she has shown some constraint and provided something that resembles a discussion. Something that seems to take a lot of effort from yourself.

        If anyone says something that is pro-Foxtel or pro-Coaltion (get a clue, the Liberals are NOT in charge) you and others immediately put on the tin foil hats and cite a fictional conspiracy that the poster must be attached to.

        Seriously, @ax, if you can't keep your language clean and actually contribute to the discussion then why the blazes do you keep posting here? Besides devaluing yourself, you are creating unwarranted noise that distracts from the topic at hand (which is about Foxtel vs. Netflix and has nothing to do with that fallen figure head Abbott).

          Once again, well said.

        what's wrong with tony, you F WITH ?!

      They paid for the content rights, which would include recording to the HDD and encoding it so as to be only playable on the Foxtel box. It isn't the same as you ripping a copy of a BluRay you own or downloading a copy of a movie.

      Although, I am fairly sure as long a you don't distribute it you can make a copy of a disc you have. It's when you start giving that copy out to others that content owners have issues.

        You can make a copy but you can't break the anti copy technology. So you can't really.

        But if all in doing is watching that movie, what difference if I record it on IQ3 or download it to watch. Both allow me to watch a movie. If it's been released on free to air TV or IQ3, then because I can save the movie by, PVR, set top box, dongle, USB stick then why should it be illegal to make said copy on my computer.
        That's like saying yellow cars are illegal but you can have one in any other colour.

          "But if all in doing is watching that movie, what difference if I record it on IQ3 or download it to watch. Both allow me to watch a movie."

          When you record it using IQ3 (or any PVR) you are making an encoded copy that can only be used on the devices it was recorded on, the network that showed the Movie/TV Show paid for the rights to show it which include you being able to record it in this manner.

          If you just download a copy from a website and store it on your computer than you are breaking copyright law, no rights were bought, so no royalties were paid, etc.

          Downloading a Movies/TV Show isn't stealing, you are not taking something from them and preventing them from having it, you are just copying something and not providing remuneration for it. It's breaking copyright law, which has its place, but probably needs to evolve to keep up with the digital world.

          Think of it this way, if you make something really cool and you want to sell it, you get it distributed by someone and you start getting money from sales. But, you also notice a lot of people are just copying it for them selves (without paying) and some are even then redistributing it to others. Would you be happy with that?

          When it comes to Movies and TV Shows (and Music) the bigger issue is the availability, regional rights and exclusive deals. These things don't work in a digital world, there are no regional barriers anymore, making exclusive deals just make it hard for consumers to see something and ends up pushing people to find it in other ways.

      I love how this article didn't include any of the positive comments about Foxtel posted on this very site! Great work Luke as always.

        Mate, I look at almost every comment that goes live on Giz. There are a lot. But with Foxtel, I'd say it's probably 75-25 negative-positive. People can be pretty down on them sometimes!

          I get that, but to blatantly disregard those comments is silly.

          I replied to the very comment you pick out above (“I’ll never be paying for Foxtel out of principle.”). That comment received double digit 'down votes' where my reply to this silly comment received 16 'up votes' and numerous comments under mine agreeing with me. To simply ignore that because it wouldn't fit in with your story is ridiculous.

          You should have noted that, if you going to pick that comment out. By not doing so, is not telling the full story.

    The Best thing about Netflix is that I don't have to buy ANOTHER black box to take up a HDMI port to watch content. This device, no mater how advanced, can not compete against the ease of use that Netflix offers. Presto is more likely to succeed than the iQ3.

      If foxtel go worked on EVERY ANDROID DEVICE, I wouldn't have needed to buy another black box either.

      I wanted to watch the AFL this season, so I had to stump up the coin for a satellite dish and a $60 a month subscription.

      If I could have just used my existing Neo X8 android TV box to watch foxtel go, then I would have just signed up for that instead.

      The "solution" to the "problem" is very simple as far as I'm concerned. Android represents 90% of the market, and 90% of interested foxtel subscribers want to watch the AFL, so why not open up Foxtel Go to every android device so that all those people who want to sign up, but are limited to technology purchases their bank balance can afford, can sign up?

      Why not a PC you might ask? Well that's because of a crazy licensing deal with the AFL where no PC can watch AFL games in Australia. (internationally, the AFL sell access to the games in high definition for PCs, but not here, in our country.)

      Last edited 25/03/15 1:58 pm

        Yep. Foxtel really need to support more devices on the Android side. I have one of the 'compatible' devices (Galaxy S3), but yet it is unsupported because I have rooted it. I'm surprised Foxtel hasn't copped a bigger outrage over this like Square Enix did over Deus Ex: The Fall (then again, smaller audience for Foxtel)

        Foxtel Go is absolute junk anyway. It's forever 'not responding', telling you you have 'no internet connection', and randomly closing. Absolute rubbish.

          Exactly, they just dont see the value in providing the service that their customers want. They are too focused on sticking with the old distribution model.

          I had foxtel, paid $90/month and I did not get an enormous amount of "channels". Those that I did have were discovery 'package' and other crap. The single reason I canceled was simple: Too expensive. Who in their right mind pays near $100 for ADVERTISEMENTS! and F*CK ALL CONTENT at someone elses schedule..stupid waste of money and time.

          Bring on US catalog of netflix, Foxtel have enjoyed a pay tv monopoly for far too long.

          Last edited 26/03/15 1:37 pm

        This is something which Aussie sports aren't doing yet. If AFL offered HD games that I can download and watch on PC, I'd pay heaps. That's all I will need, no channels, no packages, no ads, I'll pay just to watch the games on HD, and for that privilege I'd pay a lot. Replace AFL with every other mainstream Aussie sport. Take a look at NFL Gamepass or MLB.TV to see what I mean. This is a huge opportunity for any sport willing to give it a chance. I'm sure it would do well.

        Last edited 26/03/15 10:13 pm

      No, the best thing is NO ADS.
      Will the new foxtel be ad free?

        No, but that's because you are seeing all new shows most of the time.

        If they didn't have ads then the cost of foxtel would be $200 a month.

        If you want to watch ad free foxtel it's definitely possible, just load up OnDemand after the show has aired and watch it there. That has 1 ad at the beginning, then the rest is ad free.

        So how can netflix, stan, et al do it for $10 a month ad free? Because they are all old episodes from seasons past, not present.

        Last edited 25/03/15 2:39 pm

          I'm sorry but at least 70% of Foxtel's stuff I think we have all seen at least 3 times over.

            I'm pretty sure I saw the same episode of Family Guy twice in one week once, same channel, same timeslot...

            Last edited 25/03/15 4:01 pm

              The 2 episodes they are showing this week are Halloween on spooner street and baby you knock me out.

              So s09e04 and s09e05

              They have to repeat episodes multiple times per week because otherwise how else are you going to fill up a linear channel 24 x 7?

              Family guy is a bad example though because foxtel don't have the rights to family guy in Australia, channel 7 does, and they on-sell older episodes to foxtel to show.

              They pay per episode per week so why would foxtel pay 10x more just to show 20 old episodes per week instead of 2?

              Clearly you guys don't understand how tv rights work.

              Last edited 25/03/15 6:12 pm

                it is a bad example, when u think u can watch all seasons of Family Guy on Netflix in U.S

                Last edited 25/03/15 9:12 pm

            That's so wrong. Maybe if you are watching at 6am everyday or something.

            Search the foxtel tv guide here: http://www.foxtel.com.au/whats-on/tv-guide/default.htm
            (requires flash)

            It also depends on what shows you are watching. Free to Air TV owns the rights to a lot of shows in Australia - that's just a fact - foxtel only have the rights to show a select few, and buy the rest on a per episode shown per week basis from free to air.

            Last edited 25/03/15 6:13 pm

          Wrong. Stan has Better Call Saul exclusive rights. Unfortunately I cant comment weather it has ad's in it or not as I don't have Stan.

            That's because fairfax own the rights - and they wouldn't bother selling it to foxtel because TBH it's a fairly average and over-rated series (and i've seen every episode)

              "because TBH it's a fairly average and over-rated series (and i've seen every episode)"

              So have I and, TBH, you're wrong.

            Stan doesn't have ads.

            I have Stan, Netflix, and Presto (trial - will drop the TV sub once over)
            No ads on them
            As for this IQ3 no idea but too little too late.

              One good thing about streaming video, no ads. Can watch TV show marathon.

          Rubbish. Netflix, Hulu plus, Stan, and others have current content, although Hulu do have ads but not wall to wall like foxtel do. Netflix even produces its own programs like House of cards., ad free. Foxtel have milked its customers as well as treating them with utter contempt with all the ads. Whats sad for them is that they've decided to get into the 21st century well after the horse has bolted. They might be changing their distribution of content, but the attitude toward the customer has not. Which is why I cancelled my subscription 18 months ago. They won't get me back, no matter what they do with their black box.

          Last edited 25/03/15 10:35 pm

          Better Call Saul is available on Netflix UK. I watch a new episode every Tuesday night. It does not cost $200.
          Stan does the same thing for about the same price.

            The $200 example was for all those channels but it doesn't matter anyway - you people all have such closed minds that it really doesn't matter what I say.

            Channels that are expensive to produce and air, like national geographic channel, would not exist without the cable/satellite TV providers of the world. Neither would live sport.

            These providers will not go away anytime soon and you want to use SVOD instead for a wide range of old content, with the exception of a handful of shows, then that's your choice.

            Some of us who like to watch need foxtel in our lives. I am grateful that SVOD has brought down the price to something most people in Australia can afford now.

            There is a very good reason why you will never find stan or netflix doing live sport. The business would go broke buying the rights if they did.

            Last edited 26/03/15 5:34 pm

          If they didn't have ads then the cost of foxtel would be $200 a month.

          No, I am convinced that if they dropped the ads, the price would be the same. 50% of Foxtel is owned by Telstra. This means that access to the communications infrastructure is minimal at most for Foxtel. Other providers have to rent from Telstra and we all know how much Telstra loves to stiff those who rent from them.

          Foxtel's main partner has the infrastructure (until recently) so the ads could never be justified but came anyway once the restrictions the then Howard government put on Foxtel expired.

          The ads are there as a means of price gouging. They can afford to drop the ads. They just choose not to do so.

          And even if there is an extremely remote possibility that the ads are there to kept subscription costs down, it is the rights holders to the presented content that are to blame as they see Australia as a means to milk as much as they can with little to no consequences.

            The other issue with dropping the ads is finding content to fill in the 9 minute gap between 8.21 when your show finishes and 8.30 when the next one starts.

            Every subscription TV provider in the whole wide world has ads.

            Stan/Netflix/Presto etc are SVOD (streaming video on demand) which is a different model all together.

              Foxtel used to have such a system. For example, back in the day, Fox Kids used to fill in the gap with shorts that ran for that period of time like 00-Duck.

              And the original form of Cartoon Network used to fill in the gaps with the classic cartoons like Merrie Melodies and Looney Tunes.

              And given that Foxtel has Turner Entertainment as one of its content suppliers, it's not short on fillers.

              So no issue at all. Just plain laziness born from the market because Foxtel had the premium advantage that others did not.

              Last edited 26/03/15 5:38 pm

      Yeah watching NRL, AFL, V8 Supercars, F1, Premer League, Serie A, Game of Thrones is going to be great on Netflix! Oh wait.... Moron.

        I upvoted your comment here, it's exactly the same thing i've been trying to get through to all of these people.

        Live sport and premium shows like GoT will never be on one big SVOD provider like netflix because netflix wouldn't exist within 2 years if they bought the rights.

        If you don't like the ads on foxtel you can easily avoid them by
        a) recording the show on the hard drive the box has built in
        b) use the catch up service that's built into the box to stream it off the Internet

        You have options - the ads need to be there because shows don't go for half an hour or an hour, they go for 21 and 43 minutes and it's how every satellite provider on the planet can give you 50 channels for $50 and still make some money.

        The people who want SVOD can go their hardest, but it won't replace satellite/cable providers anywhere at all in my lifetime.

        These same people probably pirate every live sporting event they can find without understanding the amount of people needed to put that event on.

        Last edited 26/03/15 5:42 pm

        Yeah we all know Netflix isn't about sport mate. It's movies and TV shows. Game of Thrones is the world's biggest and most expensive show, a phenomenon. Don't call others morons when you find very specific examples of what it doesn't have, you are the moron now for doing this.

        I used to watch NRL but haven't even watched a game this year, AFL.. cross country ping pong.. sorry don't watch druggos, V8 supercars is on One anyway, soccer - pass, but more skillful than AFL. Game of Throne don't watch that either. I am enjoying Netflix though, quota free no less.. It's a great experience actually - better than my own Plex server in fact. no drops, minimal buffering.

      it just needs to be on more devices.

      Netflix or any streaming service suffers all the same goals...... lack of content...

      If the future is any and or TV shows/movies was available to stream, past, present and future, then then would be no need for set top boxes anyone who must get tired to any kind of package now-days...

      That is so 2000's .... Time to step it up a little and face the facts of where digital media actually is headed, rather than just living in the past. This is 2015 after all.

      In this day and age some of us pirate, thus we obviously have a good internet connection.. The only thing holding us back is content availability streamed.

      Last edited 25/03/15 9:06 pm

        That's fine, just so long as you understand that in order to get the premium tv shows and the live sporting events as well you are still going to be paying nearly $100 a month anyway.

        The NBA charges $35 a month, the AFL is $25 a month (thats the HD price people from overseas pay), etc - once you get a few sports together that you like it's actually cheaper to just get foxtel in HD for $60 a month.

        Last edited 26/03/15 5:47 pm

    But I already have a perfectly good model/router with wireless capability and a NAS. Why would I want to add another box to the collection?

      Reason 1:
      The new box is crammed full of tuners so you can watch three ADS at once while recording a fourth, and also pack in free-to-air ADS as well.
      Reason 2:
      Unlike any other piece of content consumption hardware (smartphone/table) which you can take with you any were to, you know, consume content and eventually leave or loose, the New Box is always stay home - you will never loose it!
      Reason 3:
      With The New Box you also having the The Old Good Foxtell with all latest shows in just up to year or two after airing in US! Or never.
      Reason 4:
      The New Box scores 1.5 times more IQ points then the Old Box. It's so Smart!

        If that tuner line actually works on people, I should start selling new PCs "crammed full of 5.25-inch floppy drives".

          Sitting here watching a choice of online tv, surrounded by laptops and smartphones, i wonder if they even understand technology.
          Why have 24 tuners when i can watch what i want, when i want, for a lot less than Foxtel charges.
          no piracy, all choice.
          My kids can watch their own shows on their own devices, artists get paid for their work.
          A silly box of old ideas x4 is not enough to interest me, the idea they promise tablet integration as a possibility is laughable, i can do it already.

          offer something innovative, or just play catch up with those that can

        The New Box scores 1.5 times more IQ points then the Old Box. It's so Smart!

        Maybe it can teach you, and most of the internet, the difference between "lose" and "loose".

          English is my 3rd or 4th language and I'm not very good in it.
          So every grammar lesson is welcome )
          Thank you.

    As an ex-Foxtel subscriber (I cut the cable in 2010) what I see is Foxtel's focus on the "new ship" rather than addressing the huge elephant in Foxtels corner - advertisments. I cut the cable because of the content (advertising being one of my main issues) and I think as other options become available Foxtel's expectation that people will keep paying them money to watch advertising will make them more and more irrelevant. Good bye Foxtel and good riddance.

    Is this a paid for piece? It reads like a puff-piece to convince people that the IQ3 box will fix everything that's wrong with Foxtel and it's business model.

    A few details above about the IQ3 are incorrect. For example:
    1) it won't allow users to watch 3 programs at once. Not sure how you'd do that anyway as it only outputs one video stream at a time! I think you meant to write it will allow users to record 3 shows simultaneously while watching another. As it has 4 user accessible tuners vs 3 in the IQ2 box.
    2) the FTA channels are already available with the existing IQ boxes
    3) LookBack and StartOver are already available on the IQ2 box (albeit limited by licensing agreements)
    4) On-demand psuedo streaming is already available on the IQ boxes

    I've commented before that the only *real* features are the ability to record one more show concurrently and a bigger hard drive. And the latter is becoming increasingly redundant in this era of streaming IPTV.

    To be frank, I don't really see how the IQ3 boxes have anything to do with Foxtel Play (a completely different delivery system) or how Foxtel runs syndication and/or licensing. Really, it's just the emperor's new clothes.

    Foxtel should really be concentrating on delivering it's content via Presto instead of IQx or Play. There are plenty of people like me who only keep the box for the sports package. And I have no intention of paying News Corp a second time to get Presto too. They've already lost me to Netflix and as soon as AFL is available live online, our Foxtel sub will be cancelled.

      I've removed a few comments asking the same thing because I'll only say what I say every single time on this piece once: this isn't an ad, ads are clearly marked, this is an editorial feature.

      As I mentioned in the piece, Foxtel bashing is practically a sport here at Gizmodo, and I'm happy to join the chorus of jeers when it's appropriate. I've done it a lot during my time here.

      We interviewed these executives and wrote this piece after our Foxtel iQ3 briefing last week. We weren't approached by Foxtel to conduct the interview, I approached them and asked them questions without the PR person around. This couldn't be any further from a placed piece.

      Foxtel may not be your cup of tea, and that's cool. It's still not mine if I'm perfectly honest. I'm a dyed-in-the-wool "cable cutter". But if you disagree with the piece, say why rather than donning a tin foil hat and saying it's paid for. We can aspire to better discussion than this.

        Luke, I hope you can forgive the many for thinking this was a paid article. What made me think this is that you did not ask about foxtel advertising on a paid subscriber service, which is clearly a big difference between Netflix and Foxtel today. Did you forget to ask?

        Very well, in which case why not ask them difficult questions such as "Why are you sticking with proprietary hardware-based delivery when other providers are pushing platform-agnostic IP-based delivery?"

        Having the physical box made sense when internet was too slow or unreliable to stream. And few people had a console or home computer powerful enough. Fox used the available technology to their benefit. And it worked, especially in the absence of competition.

        But now this is obselete with faster internet, 4G and ubiquitous media devices in every home. That Fox is backing Presto suggests that even they can see the writing on the wall. So it's a little surprising that they aren't prioritising this so they can be a genuine competitor to Netflix and Stan rather than just rehashing their existing products and hoping everyone will be impressed.

        I suspect the days of scheduled broadcasting are numbered, either subscription or FTA. And that again, would have been worth asking them about and how they intend to avoid becoming a footnote in history.

        Maybe not paid for, but you were overly gentle hence the assumption.

        Can we get a feature on the best Tin Foil Hats coming out. I hear there has been some huge advancements in this field over the last 18 months. The other day I saw PURPLE foil at Woolworths...or maybe Coles (this isnt a paid comment for Woolies!)...what was I talking about? Oh yeah, purple foil! Advancements! Technology! Golden Age!

        Full disclosure: I currently have Foxtel and enjoy it (Selling Houses Australia...best show going round!) and I signed up for Netflix yesterday. Im very very very bored at work.

        Luke, your whole piece should have just read "Foxtel are a bunch of bastard faced bastards who want to steal your money, looks at this plastic box of deception and thievery they want you to install in your house to spy on you for Murdoch's NWO. What bastards."

        I think that would have made the plebs happy.

          Zombie Jesus throws UnexpectedAccuracyException: Sarcasm detected but sarcastic statement is accurate.

          Bit shorter than I would have liked for a feature if I'm honest.

        Well said!

        Hey Luke if you don't do foxtel, then how do you watch the AFL/NRL?

        You are a male living in australia aren't you? When you have been on download this show (videos on YouTube) you don't strike me as metro at all.

        So how do you watch the footy? :P

      existing boxes do not have free to air channels if you are on satellite foxtel.

      They do have ABC/SBS - but not 7/9/10

      Last edited 25/03/15 2:41 pm

        7, 9 and 10 are only available in areas with Foxtel cable. Satellite users do not get access to 7, 9 and 10. iQ3 has a TV aerial plug and TV channels can be programmed onto the iQ3.

          My mother is on Foxtel satellite and she gets all those channels.

          From what I've read it's certain areas where some FTA channels are omitted depending on your transmission method.

          And no, the antenna is not connected to her box (an IQ2 SD).

        existing boxes do not have free to air channels if you are on satellite foxtel.

        Since when? My mother has been with Foxtel for years and she gets the 7, 9 and 10.

        Don't you mean their variants, like Go and 7 Mate?

      http://www.afl.com.au/livepass/afl-tv
      now you can ditch foxtel. The stream is the foxtel callers and you don't get all the shows about AFL but you get the game ad free siren to siren. There are ads at quater, half and three-quarter time.

        Live matches only available on apps for Mobile and Tablet. Only replays are available on laptop or desktop. You think Foxtel are that stupid to be undercut by something like this? Know the facts moron.

          If you know what you're doing, you can mirror your streams to TV's. Surly you would know that, or does that make you a moron too?

            Yea you can do that, if you like watching 512kbps streams on a 40-60" screen.

            I'm legally blind and even I think it's barely watchable.

        The link you posted clearly states
        • Every AFL match live through the AFL Live App on mobile and tablet
        • Plus full match replays and access to AFL.TV on mobile, tablet and desktop

        Foxtel know where their bread is buttered. Maybe not this next one, but in the next rights deal after that ALL games will be on foxtel and nothing on free to air.

        Last edited 25/03/15 11:03 pm

      Interesting that you should point out the error about watching three shows at once. Because that same error was pointed out by many commenters on a story earlier in the week about the IQ3. That'd be the story that appears to have been cut and pasted and stuck into this one. If you're going to be so lazy as to just lift half an article and put it into a new one, at least fix a mistake you made in the original.

    Movies and TV yeah, but what about sports streaming? Is there another way to view fox sports other than subscribing or going to the pub?

      This.

      AFL & NFL & Cricket Australia all provide subscription services streaming live matches to devices and desktop. Have been for a few years now. You can pay weekly, monthly or yearly.

        I subscribed to NRL Digital Pass to watch NRL live on my laptop for the games not shown on free to air. It was advertised to cost $2.99/week and said that Telstra customers had free data. The second game I watched I checked my data usage and discovered I had used 1.3GB to watch one game and a few coach interviews. The next game I checked data usage after 15 min and it was 220 MB.
        I queried Croudsupport and showed the link to the Telstra page where it quite clearly said that Telstra customers would get free data download. However, Croudsupport responded with a link to a different Telstra site explaining that data use was charged, except for SOME Telstra customers. They did not acknowledge anything about the page I had highlighted.
        Previously I'd had Fox to watch the NRL games, but the rest of the stuff did not interest me. At the time I was paying about $75/month. $25/ month was for the stuff I didn't want so in the end I thought over one year, I watched about 6 months of NRL and hardly anything else so effectively I was paying $150 per month for a possible 20 live games of NRL or $7.50 per game. Anyway I cancelled my subscription at the end of last season and looked for an alternative at the start of this season and signed up with Digital Pass.
        I'm on a Bigpond Wireless Plan for $59.95/month getting 8GB. With each game using about 1 GB of data it costs about $7.50 per game to watch on my computer on a screen smaller than a post card. This is about the same cost to me as Fox.
        Of course Foxtel have reduced the cost that I would now be paying to $100/month and the argument above, by my reasoning, shows I would pay $5/game on Fox on a full screen compared to $7.50/game on a post card.

      Is there anything actually stopping Netflix or Stan from streaming live sport? I mean technically, obviously I know they don't own the rights. Because I'd love to see the look on Rupert's face the day Netflix announces its just bought up the rights to a major sports league.

      Go to the gym, they have Foxtel on little TVs on the treadmills :)

    "It’s got features in there about buffering downloads [for consistent playback]. You can adjust that buffer so that while content might take a little while longer to start, you’re more likely to get to the end of the program without it buffering"

    So why couldnt they do this with presto? I am on a terrible Telstra ADSL1 connection and Presto lasted about an hour in my house before i cancelled it. It stopped to buffer that much it was unwatchable. However via VPN to netflix US I had no buffering issues. As said in teh statement it would take a little longer to start but was fine after. Your presto compression sucks arse!

      Don't blame the connection. Mine's pretty decent and I had the same problem with Presto and got rid of it inside a day.

    I still won't pay for Foxtel out of principle.

      Principle of what? They are providing a service that consumers want. To provide a legitimate service that has rights to AFL, NRL, V8 Supercars and other content like Game of Thrones, costs millions and millions of dollars. The fact of the matter is, there is too much content that people want to be supported by the 3 private FTA broadcasters. Your prinicple comment is just bullshit. I bet you pirate everything and claim that you don't pay for Foxtel 'out of principle'.

        Had a Foxtel subscription
        Biggest waste of money I have ever seen.

        1. F**KING OVERPRICED, yes very very overpriced for the content. I was paying near $100 for discovery "package" and a few other minor "packages" FTA deliver funny enough: for free..
        2. F**KING ADVERTISEMENTS. Paid TV has NO excuse for advertisements. None. Nothing, i do not accept the cost of business bullsh*t.

        Cause: Monopoly.

        Now we have the start of competition, but their catalogues have a long way to go. US already enjoys a significantly catalogue for Netflix and like services. SO its only a matter of time here before the VPN'ers shift to the Aussie services.

    Netflix only works if you're happy to watch content that has already screened elsewhere. You're unlikely to watch all of their original content.

    Foxtel doesn't have this issue - they receive most of the best original content, control a majority of all sports rights and provide you with the capacity to watch your favourites from an extensive backcatogue or join new programming.

    Until Netflix and the like pick up on-demand screening of new programs (such as Stan with Better Call Saul and Community) or new sports rights, then people will continue to stick with torrenting or Foxtel

      I signed up for Netflix yesterday and it was purely for their original content. HoC S3, Daredevil, that comedy with the bird from bridesmaids and the office (US) in it that Tina Fey helped create.

      Arn't we all missing one other here ?

      iTunes. They have first run movies.

        LOL thanks for the tip 2009. While we are at it, hey everyone 'don't forget about DVDs!'

      Better Call Soul screens on Netflix UK. Watched it last night. House of Cards is a Netflix production, as is a few others. Can't get more original than that.

    What happens on Netflix if you want to watch a show that has already started or was aired 24 hours ago or was on another channel at the same time you were watching something. FAIL!

    Long live Foxtel and the IQ3.

    Last edited 25/03/15 2:16 pm

      Hahahaha, that is hilarious.

    On principal i wont touch anything Foxtel/Telstra. If you want to support a company that would rather run a countries IT infrastructure into the ground because its better for their profit margins then by all means stick with Foxtel and its boxxed distro service.

      That makes sense, a company that runs infrastructure into the ground but still makes profits? GO home leftie.

        has anybody noticed the usual 75/25 foxtel critic percentage has shifted? Seems like a lot of Foxtels fans here all of a sudden.

        GO home leftie? I think you left a YouTube comment here....

    Did they still show advertisements on this newfangled service? “I still don’t think Foxtel quite gets it…”
    No subscription required? “I still don’t think Foxtel quite gets it…”
    ~$10 per-month? “I still don’t think Foxtel quite gets it…”

    The only way I can see Foxtel surviving is that their business go through an entire transformation program otherwise they will just be another Blackberry... The only thing Foxtel offers that they will have a stronghold on for the next few years is sport but otherwise Netflix and Stan will significantly eat into their customer base.

    IQ3 is a positive move on their part. Perhaps a bigger move in the Hardware space and providing an entertainment device is something that will lure customers in.... both Microsoft and Sony have failed in that space with their consoles so there may be an opportunity there. I also think that some people would be happy to have another piece of kit if it housed a number of capabilities with it (DVR, TV, MUSIC, PHOTOS, BLU RAY, maybe an app store)?

    I have no idea why Presto even exists with the offering they currently have... it just seems more like a mediocre response to compete with Netflix which will just not work.

      Don't say Stan, that's garbage. Netflix has more than 10 times the amount of content, and HD for a couple of extra bucks.

    No infra-red on the remote, means my existing remote setup won't work with it.

      It also boasts infared. you can use the old remotes too. just the standard remotes is connected via bluettoth

    hope they lower the price of the sports package, currently, $90 a month is way too expensive :(

      it is considering the sports package is advertised at $50 a month now.

      I'm in the same boat. I only want sports, no other junk.
      Basic package - $25
      Sports package - $25
      HD - $10 (Mandatory for sport on anything over 32"
      iQ for recording - $10
      Plus $150 for installation and hardware (Even though I already have a satellite dish..)

      So, $70 a month to just watch football and the occasional F1 race. Drop that to $60 and I miss a whole lot if I don't stay at home all weekend AND stay up late on Sunday nights to catch the F1/MotoGP/WSBK/Whatever.

      Seriously Foxtel. What the hell? I get that you made huge bids to tie up the rights. If you had just a sports pack with no other content you would have a million subscribers in a week. Sky sports in the UK is 8 pounds a month. 8 FREAKING POUNDS.

      Charge me 20-25 a month for sports and I'll take it. I'll even pay your stupid setup fee.

      Last edited 25/03/15 2:43 pm

        here have an upvote! Also why do they need to put a box in my house?
        The internet is here we can watch these things on line. Foxtel should be a complete web based service accessed via an app or web browser. Foxtel play is the right way forward. For customers in remote areas that have bad connections then sure a satellite dish and a box but for the majority of customers it should be web\app al the way.

          I would hazard a guess at the reason being that it is far simpler to rip recordings from a webstream on computer than it would be to get the recordings off the IQ box. This would absolutely be considered when negotiating rights to content.

        It's 100% a monopoly, is the thing. The only competitors have nowhere near the rights so it may as well be, anyway. I feel like if at least one of our commercial stations suddenly dropped out of being FTA and suddenly became subscription providers we'd actually benefit more than we'd lose. And that's goddamn ridiculous.

        Yeah it's a pretty crowded board. $70/month just to watch the SkyF1HD coverage too.

    It's all well and good to have a fancy new IQ box with all those new wiz bang features. But at end of the day it comes down to the content on offer. People don't want sub quality HD picture, over watermarked channels, over done insurance advertising, repeats and paying $50 a month doesn't get you HD content. Why they don't just included HD for free these days is beyond me.

    God knows what would happen if HBO decided to bring HBO now to Australia.

    Last edited 25/03/15 2:39 pm

    If Australian sports wise up and allow a subscription streaming service like the MLB, NHL, NFL and NBA do in America that could wipe out Foxtel completely.

    Still zero interest in Foxtel

      NRL too: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.telstra.nrl

        But it's only an 'app'. It should be able to work on a big 50 inch TV, good quality.

    I currently have foxtel go. Mainly for AFL as I support an interstate team. My main three issues with foxtel go is picture quality on streaming with my Samsung TV, Xbox 360 and laptop, foxtel have some work to do on this compared to Netflix. Second is the price point for streaming foxtel services is way to expensive and limited anytime options. Last is devices available to use, there are several to choose from but where is the Xbox One foxtel app?

      I had Foxtel on Xbox 360 and it was TERRIBLE quality. Was very disappointed and cancelled it shortly after. This was just before Foxtel Play was made.

    Much too little, much too late, from a company that burned its bridges, gathered the charred remains and burned them again, ground them into ashes, burned the ashes, shat on them and then burned the shit and ashes twice more for good measure.

    Foxtel, you think you can exploit customers and treat them like scum and then buy yourself back into the good books with a few shiny new bits of technology? GGF.

      Please don't foxtel any ideas for presenting the next "Ashes" tour.

    For sports fanatics, Foxtel is still our only real option isn't it?

      Yep. I watch A-league, EPL and la Liga, can't get them any other way. The minute I can, bye bye Foxtel.

    That's all surprisingly compelling (in that it is even remotely), but they still haven't built a new ship. They've just radically renovated the existing one.

    A new 'ship' wouldn't still rely on linear broadcast to debut content, the limitations of which are one reason so many shows still get seriously delayed (most recently, Turn and The Red Road). It would throw all content online as soon as it's available and then find a place for it in the broadcast schedule for those viewers who still prefer the old world experience and don't care about delays.

    A new ship would also seriously address Foxtel's issues with pricing and advertisements rather than presenting a new set-top box that you pay at least $150 for that stops being usable once your Foxtel subscription ends.

    Reading how much effort the iQ3 took, I feel a bit sorry for the team behind it. They worked so hard to generate a service that tries to be both an old-fashioned broadcaster AND an SVOD service when the whole point of this paradigm shift is that they're nothing alike - no wonder it was a torturous process.

    Like Presto, iQ3 is another Foxtel innovation that's been created within a mandate to prioritise linear broadcasting and channel packaging, leaving it severely hobbled and not feeling much like an innovation at all.

    To me as a consumer, IQ3 as a product feels like a lumbering hulk dragging its chains behind it compared to the nimble and fleetfooted Netflix and Stan, and that's a bad look.

    I think Foxtel is beyond being repaired by a good service at a reasonable price. Game of Thrones and a few of the other recent shows to cause waves have really taken it from a service people simply don't want to spend $40 a month on to a brand they see as hostile towards consumers. Netflix is doing really well, it's been really well receieved, people love pay TV. People really like things like Stan and Presto and it's not just because they're new or slightly more convenient alternatives to Foxtel. Yet people hate Foxtel even when it does exactly what they say it needs to do.
    Their business model worked for a decade or two, but when times started changing and they doubled down on tight content control it really turned them into an oppressive force trying to strong arm subscribers into paying more rather than a premium TV service offering a little extra to those who are willing to pay for it. They tried to pretend shows like The Walking Dead were worth what they paid to keep them exclusive even though both sides of the negotiation were perfectly aware that piracy means there's you can't ransom that content away at those prices. They lashed out at people who couldn't justify paying $50 per month for two or three shows, and now they're trying to bait those people into their new services.
    I'm not just bashing Foxtel here I'm seriously asking, is it even possible to turn that situation around? If they secure a great catalogue at a reasonable price we're still going to view them as forcing us into going with their service over the much more likeable alternatives. I really think over the past 5 years they've damaged the brand beyond repair.

      Well put. Personally, no, Foxtel will never be able to turn it around with me. They are forever done. I would pirate content before I gave them a cent, and if through some bizarre circumstance the content wasn't available to be pirated, I would rather go without than associate with them.

        Tell us how you really feel.

          Sure, in fact I've written it out already, just for people to read. Have a look at the post above yours, you'll find it all right there in easy text form.

      Totally agree, and well said. This whole attempt is a bit like varnishing the deckchairs on the titanic.

      For that $50 a month (it's $45 now actually) you get around 50 channels, all of which have brand new shows on each week that have never aired in Australia before.

      Foxtel also make a lot of Australian content (not just sport).

      Foxtel is what Telstra was 6 years ago. A lot of people only hate it because it's "cool" to do so and a lot of those same people have never used the service.

      Just like Telstra, Foxtel now has a lot of competition in the market from fetch tv, netflix, and stan. Once people try those other services, and realise there is actually more coverage of more shows on Foxtel, they may be willing to pay more to use Foxtel.

      I have been a huge critic of Foxtel in the past, and don't get me wrong it still has it's issues, such as the stupid amount of advertising on some (but not all) channels, and the limited number of devices foxtel go is available on (it should be all android devices).

      It does employ a lot of Australians though.

      In an interview with Sky News Business on Tuesday night, the CEO of Netflix was asked (repeatedly) if they will fund new drama and comedy production in Australia and he refused to answer that question. If they were considering it, an answer such as "we have a budget of x million for Australian production and we're just looking for scripts right now" would have been acceptable but instead he just dodged the question.

      Last edited 26/03/15 9:37 am

        I don't think anyone hates Foxtel because simply because it's cool to hate Foxtel. Foxtel was never for everybody. I had it for years and the level of content never really matched the premium price tag unless you love sports and have a partner and three kids. There may be 50 odd channels but even a lot of two person households struggle to find enough content to justify the price tag (especially when you remove shows you watch just because the TV is already on).
        That was fine. Back then nobody really hated Foxtel. Plenty of people didn't love it but at worst they thought pay TV in general was for wankers with too much money. However as time went on and Foxtel became the only game in town they picked up a pushy attitude which rubbed people the wrong way. It started out as a way of fighting the competition but as the competition faded they sort of kept fighting just as hard and somehow it got directed at anyone who watches TV and the free to air channels they never used to compete against.
        They split all their top tier shows into different packages resulting in a lot of backlash from just about everyone. There's a solid group of people who had to resort to piracy even after spending $35 per month which is pretty insane. Their game plan was perceived as being more about blocking off key content than delivering additional content. Several sporting events were slowly wrestled away from free to air and locked away behind a larger than advertised monthly fee. If we stuck with free to air we had to wait months for timed exclusivity to wear off on shows that were already months behind the US release. The fact that 'event television' was growing huge at that point in time only severed to make people resent them even harder.
        After that we also had their aggressive responses to TV piracy. I may not agree with them buying exclusive content rights knowing full well people aren't willing to pay $40 a month for a dozen episodes of Walking Dead per year but I can still understand where they're coming from. However their strategies for dealing with it are hard to not be offended by. They had a choke hold on Australian television but maintained that someone downloading Game of Thrones then buying the box set later on Blu-Ray was the real villain destroying the industry. Those people, the ones they've been insisting are nothing more than leeches sucking the life from good honest people, are the people they're not trying to win over. Those people are also the ones that will take a lesser service, or failing that go read a blog and forget about TV, rather than subscribe to anything with the word Foxtel on the box.
        I feel like even if most people struggle to explain why they don't like Foxtel all these events, plus a bunch of more specific issues, drove them there to that stance. I don't think it's something you can dismiss as haters hating even if IQ3 and current Foxtel miles away from what people picture when they think Foxtel.

        Keep in mind I'm not saying they only offer terrible deals or that they're evil and will never change, or even that they don't do some legitimately good things, I'm just saying they may never be able to reverse the damage that's been done to their reputation amongst Australian TV viewers. On several occasions they've offered reasonable responses to their most commonly called out faults, they may not have cleared all the issues but they've listened, and yet they never really win anyone over anymore. There's always a few people who recognise a good deal when they see it but overall they don't see a fraction of the positive response a fresh brand would. Their original IQ stuff was a pretty huge deal and yet they get almost zero credit for it. This new IQ3 sounds really good and yet everyone is still throwing fists full of cash at Netflix, Presto, Stan, etc and rejoicing because they equate these new services with the end of Foxtel's tyrannical reign.

        Last edited 26/03/15 5:45 pm

          It also doesn't help that all this happened at a time when free to air invested heavily in non-repeatable reality TV, reducing the amount of good, semi-fresh content in syndication and dealing a bit of a death blow to free to air. Foxtel probably cops a lot of the resentment for 'poaching all the good shows leaving free to air with nothing' when the reality is channels Seven, Nine and Ten deserve at least partially to blame because they all but stopped producing good content for a decade. The decade before that they transitioned from Australian made TV to favouring importing cheap American TV an organisation like Foxtel had no problem baiting over to their side.

Join the discussion!

Trending Stories Right Now