Optus and Foxtel extend satellite service contract until 2031

Foxtel will continue using Optus’ satellites until at least 2031 thanks to a new contract extension.

The deal comes two years after Foxtel announced it would be moving all customers over to satellite and ditching cable delivery. The financial details of the new extension have not been revealed.

Optus Satellite owns and operates Australia and New Zealand’s largest fleet of spacecraft with five satellites currently in orbit. Ben White, Optus managing director of wholesale, satellite and strategy, said the extension was important for Optus to maintain its position as the market leader.

“As we look to the future of the satellite business, this expanded services agreement builds on our legacy of delivering world-class satellite services and further strengthens Optus’ position as Australia and New Zealand’s leading provider of satellite services,” said White.

Foxtel has had a partnership with Optus since 1998 on satellite delivery. In 2018, the subscription TV provider made the decision to abandon cable delivery entirely, moving to a satellite-only model. Previously customers could also receive the service via NBN-owned hybrid fibre optic (HFC) cable.

Two Optus satellites service Foxtel across regional and metropolitan areas, with White saying the technology positions the subscription TV business well for future developments in video.

“Our collaboration provides resilience for existing services and an opportunity for future expansion as Australians continue to embrace 4K viewing and see 8K video on the horizon. This commitment provides Foxtel with a proven and reliable platform for the delivery of high-quality video images watched on the large screens in homes and other venues over the next 11 years,” said White.

“We are pleased to continue our multi-layered relationship with Foxtel into the next decade and to demonstrate that satellite remains one of the best ways for Foxtel to provide a rich viewing experience to their customers. Optus is proud of the role we play to connect millions of viewers with Foxtel’s essential content, and we look forward to continuing to grow our long-term relationship.”

At the time of Foxtel’s decision to move entirely to satellite delivery, a spokesperson for the business said the satellite delivery is less prone to outages than HFC cable.


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