AFL Broadcast Deal Clamps Mobile Subscriber Steams To ‘iPhone’ Screen Size

AFL Broadcast Deal Clamps Mobile Subscriber Steams To ‘iPhone’ Screen Size
Image: @chumio / Twitter

AFL fans around the country have long come to terms with the fact that, when it comes to modern broadcasting technology, the sport steadfastly lives 50 years in the past. True, free-to-air finally moved to proper high definition video last year, but now the AFL and Telstra have stuffed up the digital side of things, restricting the maximum size one can watch the stream on mobile devices to “iPhone size”.

As the SMH’s Ronny Lerner and Daniel Cherny note, the restriction came to light with the recent AFL preseason match between Essendon and Collingwood.

You can read the gory details on Telstra’s support thread on the issue that, hilariously, has been marked as “solved”:

Live streams are restricted to max screen size of 7″ [17.78cm] diagonally.

This is as per Telstra digital rights agreement with AFL. Match replays are available for viewing in full screen size.

According to the SMH story, this limit is dictated by the AFL’s broadcast deal, a deal that won’t be going anywhere for at least five years.

Of course, this led some viewers to come up with… interesting solutions, such as this configuration from Twitter user @chumio:

However, as far as workarounds go, it’s not really practical:

And they wonder why people resort to “other” sources for their streaming needs.