Foxtel Now launches voice-ready streaming box with access to third party apps

Foxtel has unveiled its streaming service box Foxtel Now, with Chromecast functionality, access to third party streaming apps, free to air and 4k streaming.

It comes two weeks after the launch of Telstra TV’s latest iteration which also includes free to air and 4k streaming.

The ‘Puck’ will be available from Friday for $99

The Foxtel box will be available from Friday, and will provide users with access to Foxtel Now’s programming for those who have a Foxtel Now subscription.

Chromecast is available to use through mobile devices, and the box – which runs through an Android TV operating system – provides access to the Google Play Store, which includes apps such as ABC iview and Stan, as well as music and games.

Applications with 4k quality capability can be streamed in that format.

Netflix isn’t available as of yet, although Foxtel confirmed it was in ongoing discussions. Foxtel also said the device has voice-activation capabilities, which will eventually be available for users, as will universal search capabilities.

Peter Tonagh, Foxtel’s CEO described it as the “next logical step” in Foxtel’s entertainment strategy.

CEO Peter Tonagh unveiling the app in Sydney today.

“Foxtel Now Box is our next big step as we continue to advance our streaming offering. The Box offers much greater flexibility to enjoy Foxtel Now, live on demand and in high definition. It also allows access to free to air channels via its built in free to air tuners,” Tonagh said.

Tonagh admitted the decision to use Android TV was deliberate, as it was an “open platform” for all publishing applications in the Google Play Store.

But he said Foxtel would be offering a “curated proposition” of applications, to avoid issues such as piracy.

“We will have a curated proposition so they [apps] won’t all become available but anyone who creates an app in store can have it available,” he said.

“This means that our customers have access to a host of content, of apps and of games from the Google Play store, where they can rent or buy movies, shows, music and more.”

He added: “Everybody knows we take a strong stance against piracy and so we will be curating to make sure there’s no apps that are delivering pirated content or content that we don’t think should be available as a result of the frameworks were enter into with our content suppliers.”


Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.