Telstra TV is getting an update and is adding 4K HDR support. Based on the Roku platform from the US, the new Telstra TV will arrive in Australia on the 31st of October. Along with the quality update (not all services support 4K) the new Telstra TV will make searching for your favourite movies, TV shows, live sport easier with a global search across all apps.
The new Telstra TV will also allow you to watch free-to-air TV, along side your IP-based content from Foxtel Now, Netflix, YouTube and many more apps. It does this thanks to a new OTA coax connector on the rear of the device. This means Telstra is making a play to be your HDMI 1 device and to be honest, its probably a great candidate to do so.
Key features of the new second generation Telstra TV include:
• Australia’s first integrated live TV, catch-up and on-demand search function – the only device in the country with the ability to search for specific titles across live TV, Foxtel Now, Big Pond Movies, free-to-air catch-up and major streaming services like Stan, Netflix and hayu. Once you have found what you’re looking for, the Telstra TV will deep-link you to the content.
• Blended free-to-air and on-demand viewing experience – with the introduction of a free-to-air tuner, the new Telstra TV provides an aggregated user interface, featuring everyone’s favourite TV shows and movies all in one place. The enhanced EPG provides an instant link from live TV to on-demand content at the touch of a button.
• Unique Australian content catalogue available nowhere else – combining five catch-up services (ABC iView, SBS On Demand, +7, 9NOW and Tenplay), plus Foxtel Now, BigPond Movies, Stan, Netflix and, from 31 October, hayu – and of course every free-to-air live channel.
• Premium app experience at home and on the go – the Telstra TV mobile app allows the user to search, discover and watch anytime, anywhere. Easily find the content you love, save it to watch later, create wish lists, and use it as a second remote control for your home device.
• Personalised content-led home screen – discover content from the home screen on both the new Telstra TV device and mobile app, without having to open individual apps. The device remembers your usage patterns and intuitively takes you back to what you were last watching.
• Options to add streaming services to your Telstra bill – bring together more of your entertainment expenses into one simple monthly payment with Foxtel Now and Netflix.
• hayu to join Telstra TV – hayu brings viewers more than 150 of the best, must-see reality shows on-demand, with the majority of U.S. shows debuting on the service the same day as their U.S. launch. This includes the global phenomenon Keeping Up With The Kardashians.
• Introduction of High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC) – the new 4K HDR capable Roku Powered™ Telstra TV delivers a 4x higher resolution, compared to standard HD, when connected to a 4K HDR capable television. Streaming will become more efficient, reducing demands on the network and improving the viewing experience for consumers as more and more content is encoded in High Efficiency Video Codec (HEVC).
Based on the Roku Ultra, the new Telstra TV should deliver better performance with a quad-core processor, 802.11ac dual-band MIMO WiFi and 10/100 Ethernet port, Dolby Audio and DTS pass through via HDMI. It also features USB and MicroSD ports and for playing your own media.
There’s a lot of discussion around NBN today and a minimum internet speed of 3.5mbps is recommended, but if you’re trying to stream 4K Netflix or YouTube, then you’ll need lots more to avoid buffering.
Telstra are committing to product updates like personalised recommendations, voice activation and even more content partners.
When it comes to how much this will cost, you need decide how you’d like to pay for it, buying outright or adding it to your Telstra bill. The new Telstra TV 2 will cost A$99 for new and existing Telstra customers that re-contract or the cleaner A$192 outright for those that want to simply buy to own.
If you take the new Telstra TV on a plan, you’ll pay $8 every month, for 24 months. This decision is a personal one, but with monthly bills (like the the top tier of Netflix to get 4K quality), this may be only monthly too many and outright may be your best option. At A$192, it’s significantly cheaper than the new 4K Apple TV at A$249.00.
More info at Telstra.com/telstratv