New ISP offers Geo-locked workaround for Netflix and Hulu access reports Pat Pilcher
FYX (pronounced “Fix”), an offshoot from Maxnet has launched, bringing several new wrinkles to the ISP game. Perhaps the biggest is what FYX call a “Global Mode” which allows subscribers to access US, UK and other non-NZ content services that have long been off limits to non-US or UK internet users.
In essence, this means FYX subscribers should in theory be able to access online video services such as Hulu, Netflix, and the BBC’s iPlayer as well as music services such as slacker. Packaging the global option as part of a standard deal means FYX subscribers don’t have to learn the often complex and usually fiddly workarounds to beat geographic content blocks.
FYX is offering an un-capped service which works on a pay-by-the gigabyte basis. Subscribers pay $0.34 per GB plus $34.34 a month (with a phone line) or $59.34 a month (for no landline). Compared to unlimited offerings from the likes of Slingshot, FYX’s plans seem a little steep, however seamless access to video and music services does compensate somewhat.
Whilst FYX’s approach is unique, it also provides subscribers with a legitimate means of accessing content without infringing copyright and running afoul of the three strikes laws and accompanying fines. This said, legal complications are possible should Netflix, the BBC or any other content provider take issue with FYX’s approach.
Should uptake grow (or should other ISPs adopt a similar approach as FYX to geo-locked content), consequences for New Zealand broadcasters are probable as both Sky TV and TVNZ who have both invested heavily in online content delivery. -PAT PILCHER