Telstra NextG and Bigpond access charges and Australia Idol.

With Australian Idol 2007 in full swing many people turn to Telstra’s exclusive content available over the NextG. We think its great that someone can offer this sort of mobile content however there are problems with the setup. So is Australian Idol on NextG mobile worth the cost?

First – a generic Telstra problem: They deliberately make the costs of accessing the content and indeed phone call cost difficult to access.
Second – there is a connection charge every time you access or press the Bigpond button on your phone! They charge .70 cents every time you press that button.
Third – you pay $2 a week to access Australian Idol content. Which clearly totals $8.00 every month.
Fourth – If you access Idol at least twice a day that’s $42.00 in connection charges.
Fifth – You cannot watch Idol insider during the show as they imply.
Sixth – Next G is not shared with any other network.

Conclusion – it costs a lot and the content which is basically 1-3 minute clips of scenes in the ad breaks on the show, performance repeats and of course a simplified discussion board – our recommendation is don’t bother.

Alternative networks are so much better at charging for content.

Update: As of January 2008 Telstra no longer charges almost 2 dollars every time you press the button.  Yes it is finally free.  You can probably guess at the number of complaints about the charging, since the button can’t be hidden thanks to the limited range of mobiles they have on offer for the NextG network.