Review of the Foxtel Australian pay-tv service. Foxtel has a few problems that people considering getting it should know about before hand. Overall it is not so bad provided you have the money for it, but here are the positives and negatives starting with the negatives.
The Australian pay-tv service Foxtel provides an interesting product that is only truly possible to review properly after having had it for a while. The truth is that the quality of Foxtel is debatable primarily because many of its shows are repeats. As a result, for someone completely new to Foxtel it can be really great as they likely have not seen the content yet. However, after having it for a year or so the shows are mainly repeats that you have already seen. For instance, National Geographic consists of documentaries many of which are repeats from previous years. There are very few new episodes and even fewer original series.
Another major negative is that Foxtel has advertisements. The first set of advertisements is general TV ads and the second set is advertisements for other channels and shows. In Foxtel’s favor, the advertisements are not anywhere near as prevalent as they are on free-to-air television. However, given that you have already paid for Foxtel it can feel a little like a double fee.
There is some amazing, amazing original content on channels like National Geographic. Really original and interesting documentary content. If you are someone who likes documentaries then channels like the History Channel, National Geographic and Discovery offer fantastic content. It is almost worth getting just for this content alone, which is not just interesting but very educational. If you have children it might be worth getting it just for the educational content, though avoid packages with some of the non-educational content.
While there is advertising, there is significantly less of it then there is on free-to-air. Its great to be able to watch a show for extended periods without interruption. Furthermore, movies are not interrupted with advertisements so there will be no interruptions to movies even on channels which are not focused on movies such as TV1.
The educational content such as National Geographic channel is absolutely great. If you like documentaries and wish to expand beyond ABC and SBS, Foxtel is a very good choice. The major negatives are that there are advertisements (though less then free-to-air) and there are quite a few shows that are repeated.