Nic Naitanui of the Eagles looks to pass the ball during the round nine AFL match between West Coast Eagles and the Geelong Cats at Optus Stadium on August 01, 2020 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images via AFL Photos)
Entertainment |

Guess What we learned from West Coast Eagle star Nic Naitanui

By Luke Hopewell September 7, 2020

Our new podcast Hey, Guess What? is all about connections, and the moments in your life when you share something deeply personal with your loved ones, forge new relationships and carve out new meaning. West Coast Eagles’ star player Nic Naitanui has a lot to be proud of in his life, and he sat down with host Marc Fennell to talk about his path to the big time.

Hey, Guess What? is a new podcast from Telstra that looks to teach us all a little something about who we’re connected to, how we grow and what it all means. Subscribe to Hey, Guess What? on Apple Podcasts, or wherever you find great podcasts.

On his family…

Nic actually has a twin brother named Mark, and when he made it to the big time, that was his first phone call.

When you hear him speak, you also realise he has a close relationship with his mother following the death of his father.

“There was times, you know, we didn’t have much growing up. So I’ve been convinced my mum had to buy new 200 dollar footy boots or pay the footy fees was hard. So I think, you know, when I was told that I was going to play my first game, it was almost a sigh of relief, but also a sense of, I guess, proving that all the hard things that we went through was all worth it.”

“Growing up in my teenage years as well as not having my father and we didn’t take a bit of responsibility and with myself and my twin brother in particular had to grow up really quick. And we learnt some life skills at a very young age so we could cook, we could clean and we could do it all, you know, while I was still in primary school.”

“And you build that independence and I guess self-sufficiency along the way as well.”

On how he got into football…

Before there was the AFL, Nic played basketball. His build and the height of his jump made him great for the game.

“I remember walking home from primary school and I always carried a basketball with me and I saw these kids. My next door neighbour went on to play for Carlton and then one went on to play for the Fremantle Dockers – and they were walking and kicking this funny shape. The Kangaroo leather thing at the front of the house.

“And I’m thinking, ‘why are they bouncing this weird ball like that?’ So, I go over there and ask. And they showed me how to do it and how to kick it. I still can’t kick it. But they taught me that the basic skills and yeah, from then on, you know, I went down and joined the local footy club and I just fell in love with the game.”

Nic Naitanui of the Eagles looks to pass the ball during the round nine AFL match between West Coast Eagles and the Geelong Cats at Optus Stadium on August 01, 2020 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images via AFL Photos)
PERTH, AUSTRALIA – AUGUST 01: Nic Naitanui of the Eagles looks to pass the ball during the round nine AFL match between West Coast Eagles and the Geelong Cats at Optus Stadium on August 01, 2020 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images via AFL Photos)

On dealing with racism…

“There’s always that person that doesn’t like you because of your skin tone. So, yeah, I’d like to be honest, like if I tweet something, there’s always one person that says something racial or, you know, back to your country, things like that.”

“I find it hard as well at times now to hold my tongue and not respond. There’s been so many times that I just want to message them back. But you can’t just give them a voice. You give them a platform which they don’t deserve. So yeah, fingers crossed [racism] does [go away]. You know – it is eradicated at some stage. But just to be real with you. Like, I don’t think it ever will.”

You can hear Nic talk about these issues and more – including his incredible journey through injury and who inspires him – in our new podcast, Hey, Guess What?, hosted by Marc Fennell. Subscribe to Hey, Guess What? on Spotify and Apple Podcasts, or wherever you find great podcasts.

AFL goes augmented reality with Live Pass
Entertainment | Tech and Innovation |

Heads up! Augmented Reality debuts in official AFL app in world first for sport

By Rebecca Haagsma September 3, 2020

While most of us can’t get to a game right now, we’ve been busy dreaming up ways technology can take you closer to the action, and with Augmented Reality, we believe that AFL fans and Australia can lay claim to deploying the technology in this way for the first time ever, globally.

In case you didn’t know, Augmented Reality – or AR for short – is an incredible way to mix virtual experiences into the real world. It’s very cool, immersive and powerful technology, and while some innovative applications of it so far have been the wildly successful Pokémon Go game, viewing animals from Google, or to place furniture around your home, through our partnership with the AFL we’ve enhanced what we hope is the first of many currently static features of the app using AR.

We know from the way our fans interact with the app, that outside of streaming the game, or checking the scores and ladder, the announcement of each team’s line-up of players each week – who is in, and who is out – generates the most interest.

With that in mind, we updated the AFL Live Official app to give users a totally immersive way to view and interact with each club’s line-up for the coming round, and it’s features like these that we think will get better with 5G.

By following the prompts in the app, users simply need to find a surface and activate AR. It’s completely interactive, so users can pinch in and out to zoom in on the players, and tap on them to see their stats projected onto the virtual big screen.

AFL goes augmented reality with Live Pass

Cool, but what’s next?

This is an exciting new frontier for the way we bring sporting content to our users. It builds on a long and proud history of blending sport and technology together to bring the game, and all the peripheral aspects of it, to fans in new and better ways.

Developments using AR like this join a bunch of features fans love in the app, notably every match streamed via the app and Live Pass; speed and distance analysis for each player via the Telstra Tracker; and the brilliant (if we do say so!) AFL Stats Pro, where fans can watch individual player highlights from any match to see every involvement of their favourite player.

Sport in Australia was among the first in the world to return to play safely, and it’s that pioneering and resilient spirit that our team has taken inspiration from to develop this feature.

With AR, we see a future where Telstra Tracker allows us to watch players in real-time as they run around the field during a game to make it an entirely new experience all over again. We hope to give users the ability to isolate a player, produce real-time position replays and give you professional-grade tools from the comfort of your lounge room. Your fantasy league won’t know what hit them.

These experiences show the power of 5G as it becomes more available to our users. We’re familiar with the overwhelming speed and bandwidth benefits that comes from 5G availability, but we’re going one step further, fusing it with our innovative spirit to make experiences that have been teased for years a reality.

Stay tuned as we continue to mix sport and technology to bring better and better experiences to all footy fans.

Young professional working remotely flexibly at a restaurant with laptop, mobile phone and headphones
Devices | Entertainment | How To | Network |

How to set up the best multi-screen sport experience

By Luke Hopewell June 12, 2020

Young professional working remotely flexibly at a restaurant with laptop, mobile phone and headphones

After an impromptu off-season filled with everything from dice footy to marble racing (it’s real, I swear), the footy is officially, mercifully back! During quarantine, however, the kids may be hooked on Xbox or streaming movies, meaning that the living room TV is on the bench for this weekend’s action. Thankfully, if you’re a Telstra fixed broadband customer, you can tweak your home Wi-Fi network to watch every second of the action, in lots of places! Here’s how.

To make your sports viewing experience one that can be done from the back bedroom, upstairs living room or even the pool room, you’ll need both a strong Wi-Fi network and the right apps on your smartphone.

Strengthen your Wi-Fi

Telstra Smart Modem 2

Telstra fixed broadband customers have the home-field advantage when it comes to streaming thanks to the Smart Modem 2. It’s more than your average modem, with beamforming technology that ‘locks on’ to your devices for better reception.

To make the most of your Smart Modem 2’s technology, locate where you’ve situated your modem and ensure it’s placed in a central location between your favourite devices. Wi-Fi signal going through walls is like playing four quarters running into the wind, so ensure there aren’t big walls blocking you off from your modem.

To ensure you’re getting the best Wi-Fi signal in your chosen area before the first bounce, download the Telstra Home Dashboard app to ensure you’ve got the right coverage around the house. The Home Dashboard app helps you make a map of your Wi-Fi signal based on the floorplan of your house. That way you know where the best spots for streaming are.

If you’re in a larger house or you’ve spotted a red zone that could be getting better coverage, you may want to opt for our new Smart Wi-Fi Booster Gen 2. It is specifically designed to work together with the Smart Modem Gen 2 to improve in-home Wi-Fi. With a simple two-button setup, the single booster will pair directly to the modem and boost wireless coverage, helping to reduce or resolve black spots and extending wireless coverage from the modem’s base.

Incredible, whole-of-home coverage is more than possible thanks to our awesome suite of fixed home connectivity gear, and once your connection is running smoothly you can fire up our exclusive collection of sport streaming apps for the best viewing experience.

Get the right apps

Telstra customers get the best sporting codes on offer through a range of different streaming apps.

Firstly, there’s Kayo. Kayo takes sports streaming to another level offering multiple sports on multiple screens for up to three users at once. With features like SplitView, customers can watch up to four events at once so they don’t miss a minute, even when scheduling conflicts for those big games clash. Kayo allows fans to follow the action on the go on mobile, at home through streaming devices like the Telstra TV, or on a PC or tablet.

And if you want more, there’s always Telstra Live Pass. Telstra mobile customers get access to every live match of the 2020 AFL season, live and data-free via the AFL Live official app. Normally worth $99.99 a year and free for Telstra mobile customers, the service is available for both Apple and Android users (live streaming limited to 7” screen viewing size).

Plus, when other codes return to the field to round out the 2020 season, you’ll also have access to them via the respective apps.

New and returning Kayo customers on Telstra consumer post-paid plans can get Kayo Basic for $15 a month for 12 months; saving $10 a month on the service for 12 months (data charges may apply).

Our customers get access to an incredible world of sport and whole-of-home connectivity when they sign-up, and as various codes all take to the field once again, it’s a great time to be watching.

Game on!

AFL - Collingwood v. Richmond - Footy back in action - 11 June 2020
Entertainment |

The Footy is back in 2020, again!

By Michael Ackland June 12, 2020

AFL - Collingwood v. Richmond - Footy back in action - 11 June 2020

Extended customer offers for Kayo, and the introduction of the quest to find Australia’s fastest AFL player headline the anticipated return to play.

Good things come to those who wait, and while we have all endured a really challenging period these past few months, some aspects of our lives are returning to normal, underscored by the return of the interrupted NRL season on 28 May, and the AFL season last night.

While there were plenty of inventive ways to keep fans entertained over the break – like the inaugural Telstra Australian Dice Football League – we’ll admit nothing compares to the real thing.

It would have been almost unthinkable just four months ago if somebody told you the only way you could get your sporting fix was on a screen whether big or small, but with crowd numbers limited (or restricted entirely) Telstra has a number of solutions to keep you wrapped up in the action.

Cardboard cutout fans - AFL matches - The Footy is back for 2020
Image: westernbulldogs.com.au

Kayo offer extended

Firstly, the Kayo offer we announced in February giving Telstra customers who are new and returning to Kayo exclusive access to Kayo Basic for just $15 per month (normally $25 per month), and Kayo Premium for $25 per month (normally $35 per month) for 12 months has been extended from its original 30 June cut-off to 30 September. You can even cancel anytime for added peace of mind and flexibility.

With several sports around the world outlining plans for their return, Kayo is your ticket to the best seat in your house to watch live on your Telstra TV, computer, or mobile device. Remember, you can even add it to your Telstra bill, so all of your payments are in one place.

Kayo compliments our already existing streaming service, the Live Pass, giving eligible mobile customers access to matches from the NRL and AFL seasons on the go from their mobile.

Telstra 5G Fastest Footballer Promotion

Telstra 5G Fastest Footballer

It’s our aim at Telstra to make sure that we stay true to our mission of using technology to give fans the best possible experience, and the introduction of the Telstra Tracker these past few years has been fundamental in giving us all some amazing insights into the athleticism, speed and endurance of Australia’s elite footballers.

Telstra’s player tracker technology will feature during every Friday night AFL fixture on Channel 7 in 2020, as well as through a rolling week-to-week competition encouraging fans to help predict the quickest player of the round.

More than just a number on a screen, fans will have the chance each week to guess the round’s fastest player, with a weekly prize being a brand new Samsung 5G device (S20) so that winners can experience the best mobile technology on Australia’s best 5G network.

Visit afl.com.au/5gfastestfootballer to find out more.

Things you need to know

5G Fastest Footballer: Promotion ends 24 September 2020. Open to Australian residents aged 18 and over. Permit numbers are NSW; LTPS/20/42880, ACT; TP 20/00412, SA; T20/355. Telstra 5G is now rolling out in selected areas. Visit telstra.com/coverage

Kayo: Eligible customers must sign up through http://hub.telstra.com.au/kayo or on Telstra TV. Standard monthly fees apply after the offer period unless you cancel. One redemption per customer account. Not available in conjunction with any other Kayo offers. Redeem by 30 September 2020. Requires internet & compatible device. Data charges may apply.

Andy Lee - ADFL
Entertainment |

Introducing the Australian Dice Football League

By Jeremy Nicholas May 7, 2020

We’re bringing footy back! Well, sort of. To roll into the new way of doing things, we’re proud to present the new Australian Dice Football League, featuring players from every AFL club and hosted by comedian Andy Lee.

‏‏‎ ‎

Introducing the Australian Dice Football League

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That’s right: grab your scarves and warm up a meat pie, because we’re bringing competitive play between footballers back to your screen in self-isolation. And with this game, you’ve got the home ground advantage.

It’s a stay-at-home substitute for the winter season, mirroring the fixtures that would have taken place between rounds 8-11 of the 2020 Toyota AFL Premiership Season.

ADFL matches will start rolling out from Friday 8pm, available at the AFL Dice Footy website and through the AFL Official App as well as Telstra social channels.

The first round of the Telstra Australian Dice Football League will see a 2019 Semi-Final rematch roll-off between GWS’ Stephen Coniglio against Collingwood’s Brodie Grundy.

And to top it off, presenter Andy Lee will bring in special guests to give predictions on all the action and round up the games.

The game follows the familiar format of a footy match:

  • Two opponents roll two dice each quarter;
  • The first roll determines the goals (6 points per goal), and the second roll the behinds (one point per behind).

For example, when Patrick Dangerfield rolls a four and a two, that would be four goals and two behinds, a total of twenty-six points for Geelong Cats for the quarter.

With footy on hold we wanted to find a fun and entertaining way to engage football fans in order to give them something to watch, and hopefully do while everyone is at home helping to flatten the curve.

We hope that it not only introduces a new pastime to families’ routines at home, but it also gives football fans the chance to see their favourite players in a more relaxed and personal environment whilst showing how proud Telstra is to be involved with the AFL and sport in Australia.

We hope the ADFL will be embraced by fans who have enjoyed the partnership between Telstra and the AFL since 2002, helping deliver digital experiences to fans through afl.com.au, the official AFL apps,  player and team performance through the Telstra Tracker, as well as streaming every game live through the Telstra Live Pass.

Round One Fixtures

Here’s who will face off to determine the inaugural Telstra Australian Dice Football League champ:

  • North Melbourne’s Ben Brown vs Hawthorn’s James Sicily
  • St Kilda’s Seb Ross vs Carlton’s Eddie Betts
  • Brisbane’s Lachie Neale vs Richmond’s Jack Riewoldt
  • Geelong’s Joel Selwood vs Essendon’s Dyson Heppell
  • Western Bulldogs’s Easton Wood vs Gold Coast’s Lachie Weller
  • West Coast’s Josh Kennedy vs Sydney’s Josh Kennedy
  • Adelaide’s Fischer McAsey vs Fremantle’s David Mundy
  • Melbourne’s Christian Petracca vs Port Adelaide’s Ollie Connor Rozee
  • GWS’ Stephen Coniglio vs Collingwood’s Brodie Grundy