The new Foxtel on Xbox 360 service will go ahead next month without "unmetered" support as internet service providers (ISPs) are offering customers their own internet TV solutions.
The Foxtel streaming service will be offered to Xbox Live Gold members who already live in a Foxtel service area. (Credit: Ty Pendlebury/CNET Australia)
The Foxtel on Xbox 360 service is due in November and offers packages from AU$20 a month for users who sign up for the Live Gold service.
An hour of standard-definition streaming content is estimated to use about 800MB of data, and if the average television viewing is around 21 hours a week this would equate to 16.5GB of data each week.
Service provider iiNet offers Xbox Live content as part of its unmetered content, but its communications manager Anthony Fisk said while users are free to use the Foxtel service it won't be unmetered.
"They can use that if they wish, but there are a lot of problems with the Xbox service, and Foxtel can't guarantee service quality," Fisk said.
"My understanding is that no ISPs have made a deal to provide Foxtel unmetered," he added.
Telstra's Craig Middleton said it was unlikely BigPond customers would receive the content unmetered as "we're in negotiations on our own service with the T-Box".
Senior product manager for Xbox Live Andrew Jenkins defended the service, saying that customers need a minimum broadband speed of 1.5Mbps to access the service.
Jenkins was unable to give specifics on content quality, but he said that subscribers would be offered three different levels depending on the speed of their service. He said the "High" level would be equivalent to standard definition.
Foxtel on Xbox is only available to customers who live in a Foxtel service area, said Jenkins, as part of a deal with the satellite services. He said that Austar on Xbox subscriptions could be an option in the future but nothing had been announced.
Customers who are on the basic silver Xbox Live subscription won't be able to subscribe to the monthly service, but would be able to access Foxtel On Demand as well as Blockbuster Movies, Jenkins said.
Jenkins gave CNET Australia a demonstration of the Xbox service and explained that it had evolved from the Sky on Xbox service that debuted in 2009.
"We've launched Sky in the UK and the lessons we've learned from that have gone on to inform the Foxtel service," Jenkins said.