Foxtel has tonight unveiled a revamp of its internet delivered subscription TV service and given it a fresh title Foxtel Now.
The fresh name and logo comes as company looks to get more competitive in the streaming sector more closely compete with new rivals such as Netflix, Amazon and Stan.
Foxtel Now replaces the Foxtel Play streaming service and features a new user interface, and low-priced bundles with no set up costs and the ability to cancel at any time.
Foxtel Now will be available from tomorrow (Wednesday 7 June 2017), and will be available for a two-week free trial to new customers.
The new user interface will feature improved menus that will include a list of previously watched shows, and customised recommendations based the subscribers viewing history.
The relaunch also brings a new logo that will be seen on all Foxtel services. This new 'lower-case design' has been created to promote a friendly image for the company compare with the previous 'ALL-CAPS' design which Foxtel felt looked arrogant and aggresive.
Foxtel Now launches with the ability to stream content to the big screen via Google Chromecast. And also deliver a much-needed HD streaming upgrade on select devices (PC/Mac via Google Chrome browser, Telstra TV and Chromecast.)
As previously confirmed by DeciderTV, Foxtel will also launch its own ‘puck’ style IPTV device for accessing Foxtel Now and streaming products from other providers before the end of 2017.
Foxtel has also confirmed it will have a Foxtel Now app on the current generation Apple TV before the end of 2017. However the company has no plans to expand the product to Fetch TV devices.
The changes to Foxtel Play/Now do not effect Foxtel's cable and satellite subscribers.
Foxtel Now features five entry level packs to match viewers’ interests including Drama and Pop packs priced at $15 per month each or $25 for both. Lifestyle, Docos and Kids packs are available at $10 per month each. Details of each pack are explained in a chart below.
The Drama and Pop packs both feature the popular showcase channel, which airs Game of Thrones, this means fans of the series will be able to watch the highly-anticipated Game of Thrones season 7 and many other HBO dramas, in HD, for an entry-level price of $15 per month.
Foxtel Now’s Movies pack which includes 9 HD movie channels, is available for $20 per month, however customers will still be required to subscribe to an entry level pack before they can access movies meaning the minimum price will be $30
Similarly, the Sports pack which includes 13 HD sports channels including Fox Footy and Fox League is available for an extra $29* per month, meaning Sports lovers can get access to Foxtel’s sports programming for an entry price of $39 per month.
Recognising the popularity of ‘binge’ viewing, Foxtel has been broadening its Foxtel On Demand library and now hosts a selection of more than 16,000 titles of on-demand TV and movie programming with over 1,200 movies available.
The library includes 98 of the top 100 Box Office movies of 2016. Foxtel is boasting that its 'recent-release' titles arrive 12 months before Netflix and Stan, including movies Eddie The Eagle, X-Men: Apocalypse, Independence Day: Resurgence and Ice Age: Collision Course.
At launch, there will be over 16,000 titles in the on-demand library, half of them in HD with more HD content being added all the time.
Subscribers will have access to all of the on-demand, catch up and library content available to their selected tier plus mobile and tablet access via the new Foxtel Now app.
The change to Foxtel Now comes at the same time as the company is removing 19 channels from its streaming product. A move that generated plenty of negative comments on social media, and Foxtel message boards.
The new Foxtel Now service is available on PC/Mac via the Google Chrome browser, Telstra TV, iOS and Android mobiles and tablets, and Chromecast.
Additional devices will be updated in the coming months, until then, other devices, including PlayStation 3 & 4, Xbox One and select Smart TVs will be stuck using the existing Foxtel Play app in SD. An app for the Playstation 4 is expected to be released 'within weeks'.
Announcing the rebranded service at an event in Sydney, Foxtel CEO Peter Tonagh said,
“Foxtel Now is here and we’re thrilled to share it with customers hungry for the best choice in live sport, new movies, TV and complete seasons.
“Over the past few months we’ve introduced some fantastic new changes to our subscription streaming service including lowering the entry point to $10 per month and launching on Telstra TV. As part of the evolution of our streaming service, we felt the time was perfect to relaunch the service as Foxtel Now.
“Foxtel Now represents our most flexible and affordable entertainment service and brings with it HD streaming, a great new look and feel and the freedom to jump in and out based on your viewing preferences.”