Aussies struggle to watch World Cup after Optus’s streaming goofs

optus australia world cup streaming alan levine

While loadshedding has caused many South Africans to miss World Cup games this year, Australian fans aren’t having it much better.

Australia’s World Cup coverage is reportedly so bad that the country’s prime minister himself logged a complaint with the exclusive broadcaster’s CEO on Monday.

Judging by chatter on Twitter, telecoms firm Optus has been facing streaming issues including timeouts, long buffer times, and dead connections since the tournament began last week. And fans took to Twitter to voice their annoyance.

“This is the third day in a row! We are sick of the apologies and guarantees, you need to give the rights to an actual broadcaster or your brand will never be trusted again and will be forever tarnished!” one user wrote.

He’s not exaggerating either, judging by this video.

And it’s not just World Cup fans wanting to watch the matches online. The telecom’s network is also facing strain, according to some on Twitter.

As a result, Optus’s CEO Allan Lew received a call from Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull on Monday. Following the call, it was announced that another broadcaster SBS will also provide Aussie fans with the next two days’ matches.

It’s not clear if the call and the switch to SBS is connected.

However, according to the Sydney Morning Herald, the company isn’t ruling out giving all games to SBS if it cannot fix the issue in a timely manner.

Lew on Monday issued a statement on Twitter.

“I apologise unreservedly to all Australians. We should have done better, we can do better and we will do better,” he said.

On the pitch, Australia’s World Cup isn’t off to a much better start, with a 2-1 loss to France on Saturday.

Feature image: Alan Levine via Flickr (CC 2.0 BY)

Andy Walker, former editor


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