30 new channels follow satellite launch

satellite_2Good news for television viewers with confirmation that Optus will launch its new satellite on August 22 by an Ariane-5 rocket from the Guiana Space Center in Kourou, French Guiana.

Optus Satellite Paul Sheridan said, “The Optus D3 Satellite will increase Optus’ total satellite capacity, support existing customers including Foxtel and Sky New Zealand and enable the development of new business opportunities for broadcast television and the direct-to-home market.”

The satellite will enable more channels and features on Foxtel, including the capacity for more free to air channels to be made available to subscribers.

Foxtel has previously touted 20 new channels by the end of the year, but now Foxtel’s Patrick Delany yesterday confirmed 20 SD plus 10 HD channels.

“This is the biggest thing we’ve launched since digital TV and it is a massive overhaul,” he said.

Foxtel will overhaul its on-screen TV guide, and a bigger addition is due for October when Foxtel launches TV and movie downloads from its website for subscribers.

“We will introduce 400 hours of catch-up TV that you can download to your PC,” he said. “It will be included in your package.”

Source: ZDNet, AAP, news.com.au


  1. Austar is so second rate compared to Foxtel !! I’d love to see Foxtel available in Tassie (and other regional areas), for some true competition. I know which I’d choose.

  2. They’d be nuts to add more timeshift channels. Timeshifting is getting more and more redundant now anyway with iQ almost a staple with Foxtel subscriptions. Get rid of them compleatly and make room for even more channels.

  3. “Foxtel will launch over 25 new channels” – so that can mean 30 channels!

    No more time shifts please – most channels repeat shows enough as it is, so if iriginal boradcast time is missed, its easy enough to find a repeat next day or so. All 4:3’s should become 16:9 unless feed like Fox news is 4:3.

  4. The foxtel press release says 25 channels.

    “Foxtel will respond to the challenges in the current environment by continuing to invest and innovate. Over the coming financial year Foxtel will launch over 25 new channels; a rich array of additional interactive and high definition services; together with an enhanced broadband offering that will allow customers to watch shows on their personal computers. We will also continue to drive the take up of Foxtel IQ with a medium term aim that every subscriber have a Foxtel IQ”, Mr Williams said.

  5. And that means we’ll have more Timeshift Channels including Nickeldoen and Disney Channel 2 hours later. And Hope for Nickttoons and Disney XD too.

  6. Wish we could get rid of Austar and just have Foxtel.

    Then all Australians would have access to the same SD/HD programs and products.

    Does anyone know what Austars licensing requirements are or if they have any at all?

  7. @peter: I’m a Foxtel satellite user, who has been waiting for Seven to come on since the retransmission deal was signed in 2008.

    Hence the “Those are the three channels we are missing, due to satellite (i.e the platform of delivery) limitations” remark.

    There are no FTA HD channels for Foxtel Satellite users currently, nor the SD retransmissions of One, which was all layed down to a oft repeated remark by Foxtel themselves, simply Cable will get it first, Satellite users have to wait.

  8. @kuttsywood, we already get One HD and SD on foxtel

    i think more important to maaking up new channels that we have to pay for, is to make the channels we already have into 16:9. Buying a widescreen tv was a waste, as half of the programs we watch aren’t broadcast in 16:9!

  9. Does this mean that Foxtel via Optus customers are finally goning to get One Digital. I get foxtel via optus and dont get One from it. I also would like GO99 through my Optus TV as one of my TV’s has not atena just foxtel and the other with a set top box. They play all ABC and SBS digital channels so I cant see why they dont have One and GO on there.

  10. Hopefully we see both movie channels(Movie Network and Showtime), as well as World Movies, have HD versions of there SD channels already available.

  11. Kind of sad that Optus has the billions needed to build and launch satellites to service third-party pay TV networks, yet cries poor when it comes to bringing their mobile phone network – especially the 3G side of it – up to a vaguely usable standard to support the amount of its own customers it’s got locked into contracts…

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