The English Premier League kicked off on the weekend, along with the app Optus built to back up its $189 million three-year rights deal, but if the vortex of disaffection that is Twitter is anything to go by, things didn’t got well, with live coverage borking, and dropping out, leaving footy fans furious and rival Fox Sports perhaps trying to contain any schadenfreude.
The 24/7 channel online football channel smartphone and tablet app went live on July 4, and will broadcast all 380 games live, backing it up with an on-demand feature straight after the match.
Optus is changing customers on plans under $85 a month threshold $15 monthly subscription fee to watch the EPL, and is hoping to lure in the 500,000 Australians who watched a game last season to its service.
But Twitter was awash with complaints:
— Adam Santarossa (@adamsantarossa) August 14, 2016
— Ev (@Evan_L_D) August 14, 2016
— A Favor House (@afavorhouse) August 14, 2016
And the telco acknowledged there was a problem:
@ben_darcy We're getting mixed reports Ben – seems some users are fine. We're investigating now and trying to get this resolved. Dave
— Optus (@Optus) August 14, 2016
The Optus Sports Facebook page was the equivalent of setting flares off in the crowd and throwing bottles onto the pitch too:
Optus blamed the number of different platforms people were using, according to Mumbrella.
“The technology used to deliver ‘over-the-top’ content via broadband and mobile networks is slightly slower than traditional terrestrial and satellite broadcasting,” an Optus spokesperson told Mumbrella.
On top of that there was a 30-second transmission delay on Sunday night’s game between Bournemouth & Man U caused by satellite problems.
“We apologise to our customers for any inconvenience caused and appreciate their patience while the satellite feed was restored,” Optus said.
The man in charge, Paul Rybicki, is also starting to cop it on his Optus blog, including one customer who said he signed up for the EPL service and internet with Optus, and took half a day off work for the installation, only to be told by text message that day that it wouldn’t be done until 4 weeks into the season.
“To say I am disappointed is the most understated term I could use. Optus lied to me just to get me to sign a 2 year contract for internet and EPL,” ‘Hammers Fan’ wrote on Friday.