Telstra revolutionises sports streaming ahead of landmark year for live mobile sport

Media Release, 10 February 2017

All eligible Telstra mobile customers will be able to stream it live, fast and data free with the new Telstra AFL, NRL and Netball Live passes. Sports fans will also have access to all three apps which are available now for download through the App Store and Google Play store.

Michele Garra, Executive Director Telstra Media says the combination of Australia’s passion for live sport and new, world-class technology built into the apps is expected to revolutionise the customer experience and drive record redemptions of the Telstra Live Pass on the already popular AFL and NRL Live apps.

“Watching live sport on mobile is no longer the domain of die-hard sports fanatics, it’s what all sports lovers expect,” Ms Garra said.

During last year’s AFL grand final where the Western Bulldogs defeated the Sydney Swans to break a 62 year premiership drought, we saw a 90% increase in unique audience and a 134% increase in minutes watched when compared to the 2015 Grand Final.

“NRL fans are no different. The thrilling golden-point draw between the Titans and Sharks in Round 21 produced almost 60,000 unique views and 1.8 million minutes streamed for a live game using the NRL Digital Pass. These were both records, illustrating that when there’s a big sporting moment, the fans are watching.”

Telstra’s mobile apps will be bigger and better in 2017 with new upgrades that will make it simpler than ever to watch the live game and stay informed from the sidelines, the dinner table or on when you are out and about.

“We partnered with each code and worked with global sport app experts to create a more intelligent and informed live experience. For AFL fans in particular, this will mean a level of sophistication only seen in big league sports such as the NFL in America and football in Europe,” Garra added.

Telstra listened and worked directly with the fans from each code to ensure the upgraded AFL, NRL and Netball apps provide innovative features that make using the app simple and easy. This includes seamless authentication, live vision, enhanced stats and insights such as Bunker Decisions that allow fans to be the experts.

“Only Telstra partners with the premier Australian sporting codes to bring all customers a world class live mobile viewing experience, over Australia’s best and largest mobile network” Garra said.

Netball fans will also have access to two live games on the big screen, broadcast exclusively in High Definition on Telstra’s new Netball app for the Telstra TV, Australia’s fastest growing streaming device of its kind. In addition to the live HD Broadcast, the Netball app for Telstra TV will include live vision and live stats on a single screen for a more informed live viewing experience, High Definition re-plays of all four matches and behind-the-scenes videos giving fans exclusive access to their favourite teams and players.

A taste of what’s new in 2017:

• AFL Live app (iOS & Android):
- Integration of Women's AFL content and ability to watch live stream of women's matches.
- New personalisation allowing fans to get targeted news and updates that speaks directly to them.
- New Matches section allowing fans to view fixtures, live scores, results and filter by round, team and venue.
- Ability to watch live stream full screen on mobile, in situ or pop-out player (which allows fans to watch in minimised player as they browse the app.
- Enhanced player profiles with additional graphs and career stats, player related videos and articles.

• AFL Club apps (iOS & Android)
- 18 new club apps
- Each club app has been built to provide the ability for clubs to tailor their approach to engaging their fans and members via their own mobile apps.
- The apps leverage worlds’ best practice garnered from teams in leagues such as the NFL and NBA and provide fans with access to membership and ticketing, club branded digital keepsakes, behind the scenes content and commercial partner activations.

• NRL Official Live app (iOS & Android):
- Integration of Bunker decisions for each match in match centre allowing fans to understand the rationale of each decision during and after the game
- More intelligent viewing with the draw, player stats and related article widgets to integrate into news articles.
- Fans also have the option to download one or more of the 16 club apps on iOS or Android to keep up with all the latest from their favourite teams.

• Netball Live app (iOS & Android):
- Every match, every round, live through the Netball Live app
- Customised content feeds per team
- User controlled push notifications for match scores
- Telstra Thanks integration

• New Telstra TV Netball app:
- 2 live matches each round broadcast in HD exclusive to the Telstra TV on a big screen
- Interactive view displaying match statistics during the live matches
- Customised ‘hide scores’ feature so that you won’t receive spoilers if you’ve missed a live game.
- All match replays in HD, highlights and news
- League leading stats, fixture details and ladders

Statement from Marne Fechner, Acting Chief Executive Netball Australia

“Netball is thrilled be partnering with Telstra as we enter this new era for our sport.  More than ever, it’s essential that we give existing and new audiences the opportunity to watch our game on the platform of their choice. 

“The new app and Telstra TV will allow fans to watch every Suncorp Super Netball live or on demand, and provide them with unique insights and content that will highlight the fierce rivalries and remarkable skill and athleticism that underpin Australia’s new netball league.”

Statement from Gillon McLachlan, CEO Australian Football League

“The relationship between Telstra and the AFL is a fantastic step forward that enables our fans to access our game and support our game how they want to support it.

“Fans increasingly demand every piece of data and information around the game and their team as they are watching and supporting their heroes and Telstra enables our fans to more deeply engage with live sport as it happens.

“Connectivity for fans at venues is a key issue for this generation of supporters and the AFL and our clubs have the opportunity to directly talk to our 900,000 members and countless more supporters as we approach an exciting 2017 season.”

Statement from Todd Greenberg, CEO National Rugby League

“The NRL and Telstra’s relationship is one of the longest standing partnerships between a sport and a brand in Australia. Telstra’s investment in technology has brought entertainment and excitement to our fans.

“We are delighted with the 2017 version of the app – particularly the ability for fans to access Bunker decisions as part of the experience.”