Vodafone is about to take its NBN plans to the farthest reaches of Australia (read: Brisbane, Gold Coast, Adelaide, Perth and Tasmania, as well as the Melbourne and Sydney markets it's been operating in) so it's decided to make some announcements to sweeten the deal.
First is Vodafone TV, a fairly open Android TV box that will retail at AU$120, and second is a partnership with Netflix. If you sign up for one of Vodafone's higher tier NBN plans (the AU$80 NBN 50 plan or the AU$100 NBN 100 plan) Vodafone will also pay for your Netflix subscription for a year. In a world where three-month Netflix subs are tossed out like candy, 12 months is a pretty sweet deal.
Now about that Vodafone TV.
Vodafone TV is Vodafone's answer to, but the goal is for the device to be as open as possible. It's an Android box with access to Google Play and all the apps that come with it. It's 4K compatible, is compatible with free-to-air TV tuners and comes with a remote that features one-button access to Netflix and YouTube.
Vodafone TV is a solid $70 less than the Telstra TV 2 box (and $20 more expensive) but Vodafone's real point of difference is a commitment to an open platform. It has no vested interest when it comes to content partners and is selling Vodafone TV as a device that services consumers first.
"We're not going to maintain the status quo by buying up content rights and building walls around it," said Ben McIntosh, Vodafone's Consumer Business Unit Director. "We don't think it's fair that Australians are being locked out of access to content they want to watch.
"Australians want fast and reliable broadband, with the freedom to watch the content they love when they want. This is exactly what Vodafone is fighting for."
Vodafone TV will be available in Vodafone stores from the middle of April (the telco hasn't given an exact date). You can buy it outright for AU$120, but it can also be paid for by adding $5 per month to your broadband bill. The device will work with or without Vodafone broadband.
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