SBS will stream FIFA world cup for next 48 hours after Optus failure
Optus Sport streaming service has failed to deliver the 2018 FIFA world cup through their platform and as a result, SBS will air all games for the next 48 hours.
The decision comes after heavy backlash from Australian customers having constant issues with the Optus Sport streaming service.
“Following discussions with Optus Sport, we have agreed that SBS will air all 2018 FIFA World Cup games for the next 48 hours,” SBS Managing Director Michael Ebeid said.
“That’s an additional four games on free-to-air, giving even more Australians the chance to enjoy the tournament.
“The FIFA World Cup is a true multicultural celebration that unites Australia’s diverse communities and SBS is pleased to be bringing more of the tournament to Australian audiences.”
Optus CEO Allen Lew said: “I offer an unreserved apology to those customers that have been let down. We have a dedicated team which has been working around the clock to address technical issues where they have occurred.”
“We should have been able to anticipate the demand a lot better but we obviously did not,” he said.
“We now understand the kind of demand you can expect from a short, international competition, and that will be a learning point for us as we proceed.”
Mr Lew then issued a statement confirming that SBS will air matches for the next two nights.
“We know Australian football fans are amongst the world’s most passionate, and vocal, and we clearly understand Australia’s passion for this major event and the frustration that goes along with not being able to watch the event.
“In light of this Optus has announced that it will simulcast the next two nights of 2018 FIFA World Cup matches with SBS.
“We are confident that we have a solution in place and will be using this time to undertake robust testing of all systems.”
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull was forced to step in, speaking with Optus chief executive Allen Lew to confirm the streaming issues of the World Cup would be fixed by Monday night.
Opposition leader Bill Shorten took the opportunity to take a stab at the Prime Minister, suggesting the problem could have been avoided if not for funding cuts to SBS, who is sharing the World Cup rights with Optus for the first time.
Time will tell if Optus can fix the problem and gain back the confidence of its paying customers.