What has happened?
Chief Executive Officer Patrick Delany announced on Wednesday 24 July, plans to disrupt the TV and On Demand subscription services by joining forces with Netflix and SBS. Starting from now until November, Foxtel will roll out their new interface, dubbed ‘The New Foxtel Experience’ via a software update to over 1 million IQ4 and IQ3 boxes. The new design closely resembles the Netflix carousel feature combined with deeper discovery and access to their extensive library and live content. Furthermore their new remote control features a Netflix button and quick access to content.
The Media Store Take
With both Netflix (for the first time) and Foxtel reporting declines in subscription numbers, becoming frenemies is a smart move. This gives both players a leap ahead of Apple and Amazon launching their SVOD offerings locally. For consumers a more simplified viewing experience will only create more stickiness whereby content discovery becomes the new norm and channels begin to fade out. However as the SVOD landscape continues to shape shift, gaining access to consumers could present a challenge for brands. Whilst Netflix don’t currently subscribe to the AVOD model, it will be interesting to see – given Foxtel’s heritage – how this will play out. With Foxtel’s no walled garden approach it will also be interesting to see if the major broadcasters also follow SBS. Furthermore as viewing becomes more responsive, the opportunity for deeper insight and personalised targeting will become increasingly lucrative.