Foxtel launches On Demand video download service

Subscribers can now purchase and download TV shows and movies directly from iQ and iQ2 set-top boxes

Foxtel has launched an online video-on-demand service for its Foxtel iQ2 set-top boxes, allowing subscribers to purchase TV shows and movies directly from the device.

More than a thousand TV shows and movies — including popular television programming such as the HBO series Mad Men and recent movies like Hot Tub Time Machine — will be available throughout October with additional content added regularly. Foxtel aims to have more than 5000 TV episodes and movies available to download by 2011. Television episodes will mostly be priced at $2.95 per episode, although limited children's programming will be priced at $1.95 per show. New release movies will be available to download from $5.50, with a high-definition option costing slightly more at $5.95 per download.

To access the service, Foxtel subscribers are required to connect their iQ2 set-top box to an Internet connection — such as their home's cable or ADSL connection — via the Ethernet connection on the box's back, with no wireless network connectivity option available. Support and activation for the Foxtel On Demand service will be provided through Foxtel's call centre.

Movie downloads will be valid for 48 hours once the title is first viewed, with television episodes able to be watched for 10 days after initially viewing them — although this will be increased to 60 days for all television content in December. Like TiVo's CASPA On Demand product, data downloaded through the Foxtel video on demand service will count towards users' Internet usage quotas, although Telstra BigPond subscribers will be exempt.