Not content to sit back and watch TiVo take all the headlines in the PVR department, Foxtel snuck out a quick one-two at the Telstra Investor’s Day last week regarding their upcoming IPTV offering and a service called iQ2Go.
The IPTV service, which uses the currently disabled ethernet jack on the back of the iQ2 box, will let users download video on demand over the internet, and will be launched in the first half of next year. Of course, we’ve known that IPTV was coming to Foxtel sooner rather than later (why put an ethernet port in the back if you’re not going to use it?), but this is the first definitive timeframe we’ve heard.
The service will be available to all iQ2 subscribers, but at the moment they haven’t worked out any agreements to have content unmetered, meaning you’ll probably end up paying for the content twice.
But the more exciting news was the announcement of the iQ2Go device, which will let you take programs stored on your iQ and play them back on a portable device.The iQ2Go has been in the making for a few years now – I remember writing about it back when I was at T3 magazine – but historically it was always going to be in the form of a PMP that plugged into your iQ to copy content, and you’d take that device with you.
Now though, Foxtel have announced that instead of a dedicated PMP with a battery and screen, instead they’ll be using a 16GB USB key that’s so packed full of DRM (so you can’t copy it and to ensure you’re a Foxtel subscriber), it makes the iPod look open source.
Moving the iQ2Go concept to a USB stick will save Foxtel a heap of coin, which we’re hoping is passed on to subscribers. Of course there’s no word on pricing yet, nor specific information on what types of devices it will work with (Macs? PCs? PMPs? PSPs? iPods?), but at least we should know more withing the next six months or so.