Foxtel dumps interactive games

By David Knox on June 30, 2009 / Filed Under Pay TV 20

iq23Foxtel has dropped its interactive games service, Gamesworld, effective from today.

On Channel 555, it offered three genres of games, Kids Family, Brainteaser Trivia and Casino Sport as an additional fee-based service between $6.95 – $16.95 per month. It had also partnered with the Australian organisation TwoWayTV for its Brainteaser Trivia games.

Foxtel issued a brief statement saying: “From Tuesday 30 June 2009, Gamesworld will no longer be available as part of Foxtel’s service. After carefully considering Gamesworld’s place in Australia’s growing games market, Foxtel has decided to remove the service and use this bandwidth to provide even greater customer choice through the addition of new channels and more interactive services in 2009.”

In 2007 when it offered a free weekend of gaming access as part of a re-launch, Foxtel’s Executive Director of Content, Product Development and Delivery Patrick Delany said: “Part of the Foxtel offering is providing services above and beyond core television programs. Our interactive services, such as games, complement our TV offerings and have enjoyed strong support in the past.”

20 Comments »

  1. Cam July 7, 2009 at 2:15 pm -

    I agree with everyone above that the arcade type games were crap.. but we have always enjoyed doing the trivia that was available and updated daily.

    Really disappointing.

  2. Jason July 2, 2009 at 11:01 am -

    I can’t beleive anyone would want to play those games, if 2-D action is what you crave buy a used GameBoy or a Super Nintendo from your local Cash Converters and get cracking, I cannot beleive people in this day and age “subscribe” to games!

  3. Andrew B July 1, 2009 at 2:00 am -

    That will pretty well put an end to my mum’s foxtel subscription, as that’s all seh uses it for!

  4. Shane July 1, 2009 at 12:34 am -

    @Christine.
    Me to

  5. Christine June 30, 2009 at 11:51 pm -

    I hated it when I accidentally flicked onto the games channel and it had to launch, lol I’m glad its gone.

  6. Shane June 30, 2009 at 10:53 pm -

    @Paull , also to add about why america doesn’t have 16:9 SD feeds are most likely that most 16:9 Tvs are HD, i know what you mean, i agree with you even so i have a 4:3 tv i still like watching 16:9 feeds of channels over 4:3 and it most likely has to do with the amount of bandwidth saved by only providing SD feeds in 4:3 over 16:9 also if they changed all 4:3 SD feeds to 16:9 feeds and no longer broadcast the 4:3 feeds, because 85-90% of americans have cable/satellite tv then cable would have to find all this extra bandwidth that would most likely been used for HD channels.

    also 4:3 feeds take up about 70% of what a 16:9 feed would, so its not that much.

  7. David Knox June 30, 2009 at 10:46 pm -

    Please be succinct in comments guys….

  8. Shane June 30, 2009 at 10:46 pm -

    also Paull “watch it on ten, at least they have it in widescreen (although not hd).”
    “The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien” and “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon” is not on channel 10, what you are think about is “The Late show with david letterman”.

  9. Shane June 30, 2009 at 10:32 pm -

    @Paull “why doesn’t foxtel just get the HD feed from (say, fox news) and down convert it to SD? That’s what happens with shows on FTA (although they are also shown in HD)” i dont think foxtel gets their feeds like that, they would get a SD feed and if they wanted to a HD feed as well. And as far as the shows in HD un not sure if they are down-converted from HD to SD by the local tv station here or if they are giving to them in 16:9 SD, i think its the last one, also if you do a search for Foxtel HD blog on youtube, i know its on the foxtel website as well just search fox foxtel HD blog, i think its number 16 and 17(there are 2 parts) they go for a tour around the foxtel building and also of programs are sent over via tape(not VHS) or they have a direct signal from the United States tv station Such as ABC America and they are recorded directly off the live feed, that’s why you will see the ABC logo when you are watching the view on Arena, also on the video blog they said most channels are moving to server based programs. And also when FOX News HD is showing something which is not in HD they push the feed to the left and show extra info on the right hand side so if you were watch it on a 4:3 tv the left hand side would be cut off, if you watch the FOX Business feed via the Sky Business channel tonight you will see the HD wing on the right hand side because unlike FOX News, FOX Business always has a HD Wing on the right hand side and because foxtel are down-convert the HD feed to SD it doesnt look that good, even if you change it to 16:9 on with your remote, press setup then click on left t or right to change the aspect-ratio for the screen. Sorry for the long answer but they could if they wanted to.

  10. Paull June 30, 2009 at 8:56 pm -

    @jm: watch it on ten, at least they have it in widescreen (although not hd).

    Interesting about america not having WS for SD signals, I think it’s a bit silly, all video should go 16:9 now, seeing as it’s become the more common standard.
    Also, why doesn’t foxtel just get the HD feed from (say, fox news) and down convert it to SD? That’s what happens with shows on FTA (although they are also shown in HD).

  11. Shane June 30, 2009 at 8:44 pm -

    sorry everyone the south-east asia discovery feed is 4:3 SD, not 16:9 like i said before

  12. JM June 30, 2009 at 6:27 pm -

    On the 4:3 TV issue, im personally fed up with watching The Tonight Show and Late Night on the Comedy Channel without being able to view them in their intended way.

  13. Kuttsywood June 30, 2009 at 6:24 pm -

    Why dont they replace it with… Facebook?

    Who would want to tweet from your TV?

  14. Shane June 30, 2009 at 6:18 pm -

    foxtel is getting better, when they launched 111 hits last year it was launched in 16:9. But all of foxtels channels will never be in 16:9(or at least for a very long time) because some of them are broadcast all around the world and like fox news america doesn’t have 16:9 SD tv so we will never see a 16:9 SD feed from fox news but we will see a 16:9 HD feed from them one day. just like discovery channel we see in Australia the south-east asia feed which is 16:9 SD so unless they change it from 4:3 to 16:9 that will mean that every other cable/satellite/iptv provide will have to change as well. But channels like comedy channel i hope will go 16:9 one day, i hope soon.

    @Jake s
    “How long does it take Optus to launch a satellite anyway”
    Well its taking them to long, it was meant to go up march or this year but it keeps getting delayed so it looks like it is now going to go up August 18, so after that optus has to test it then foxtel does so we are looking at the middle of late September if we are lucky. its not foxtel fault that it is taking so long, u can blame optus for it.

  15. Paull June 30, 2009 at 5:43 pm -

    I can’t believe foxtel still has channels in 4:3!

  16. Tomothy June 30, 2009 at 5:22 pm -

    Better to use the newly obtained bandwith to make all 4:3 channels 16:9!

  17. Matt June 30, 2009 at 4:59 pm -

    No surprise, the games were generally, s**t!! Also, the pricing structure for them was fairly expensive…… good riddance.

  18. Bazza June 30, 2009 at 4:56 pm -

    It’s not that big an ask, plenty of people pay $20 a month for mindless pursuits like World of Warcraft, so the disposable income is out there. I haven’t seen them, but their games must have been pretty ordinary, because stuff like Texas Hold’em, good old Sudoku and even cheesy junk like Mafia Wars is sucking people in by the boatload…. and I’m sure there are plenty of clowns who would part with money for them.

  19. Jake June 30, 2009 at 4:53 pm -

    Great news … more bandwidth for new channels! Now how long will that take, especially being a satellite subscriber. How long does it take Optus to launch a satellite anyway?

  20. Paull June 30, 2009 at 3:55 pm -

    $7-$17 per month is quite steep for basic games like that, you’d be able to buy a home console in no time with the money spent. I wonder if anyone actually signed up for it.

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