Well this is not the kick of Optus would have wanted to this new era of sports broadcasting, and at the same time the folks at Fox Sports will be rubbing their hands together in glee.
In scenes reminiscent of Tuesday Night’s Census debacle, Optus’s first big test of their multi-million dollar English Premier League gamble has failed at the first hurdle and their customers are unhappy, and that’s a pleasant way to describe it.
Reports on Facebook and Twitter indicate the match was “unavailable” for a period, users have reported trying to access the streamed game content via both mobile and Fetch TV.
When EFTM tried, the Fetch TV stream on Optus Sport 1 was working fine, coming through very clear in HD.
However, the evidence online is otherwise, the early access to the game was problematic and very disappointing for users
— Casey Talbot (@MrCaseytalbot) August 14, 2016
— Matt Provis (@matt_provis) August 14, 2016
Over on Facebook the situation was just as bad
Once the service was restored, it appears to be less than suitable quality to many
The Bournemouth v Manchester United game was a big test for Optus and Fetch – EFTM has reached out to both for comment and clarification for customers.
Reports thus far indicate an issue at the host broadcast service in the UK – Optus and Fetch hope to have clarity on the situation in the morning.
It could well be that the instant load on services had the same dramatic effect on the streaming services as the Census users did to the ABS site on Tuesday – we’ll wait and see.
UPDATED (Monday): In the meantime, EFTM understands that user expectations of a HD stream could be problematic for some. Optus Sport apps will require around a 5.5Mbps connection consistently to stream HD, however on the new Fetch TV Mighty and Mini boxes a more advanced HEVC encoding method is in place reducing the bandwidth requirement to around 3.8Mbps.
Looking at the feedback online, it seems very clear that customers with Fetch Boxes experienced much less interruption, many reporting just one outage – so it seems the streaming to mobile devices is handled differently to the Fetch boxes, meaning for dedicated EPL fans it’s probably worth getting onto Optus ASAP for your Fetch box!