The Federal Government has said it is prepared to support the use of a phone app to watch TV shows and movies on a mobile phone.
A spokeswoman for Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said the Government was “committed to ensuring Australians have the choice of what they want to watch”.
“As part of our efforts to ensure Australians have access to the best content, the Government is committed to supporting the development of mobile video on-demand services that are available to all Australians,” the spokeswoman said.
The Federal Government’s support comes as the Federal Court is considering whether it can force telcos to sell content to pay for the rollout of a new $9.95-a-month streaming service that would be available to customers in a few years.
The ABC has contacted the Federal Government for comment.
The Federal Court has ruled that telcos are obliged to provide the service in the digital age.
“This means the Federal government will be providing some financial support for the roll out of this service,” the Federal Minister for Communications and Media, Mitch Fifield, said in a statement.
The government said it had consulted stakeholders about the use and viability of mobile on-Demand services and had given its “full support” to the NBN.
The Coalition has been trying to convince Australians that it can improve their TV experience.
It has spent more than $US5 billion to make the NBN available to its citizens and it has promised to increase the price of TV subscriptions by $US3.50 to $US9.
The price increase is designed to make up for the NBN’s slow rollout and cost.
On Friday, the Federal Opposition said that it was “unable to support a pay TV package” that would cost more than the NBN, as it would leave the Coalition unable to “keep the promise of a national broadband network”.
“It’s the biggest rip-off in Australian history,” said Opposition Leader Bill Shorten.
Labor has been more blunt, saying the Coalition was “worse than the last government”.
“The Coalition’s NBN will make people pay more for inferior broadband, not less,” Communications Minister Mitch Fifielding said.
Finance Minister Mathias Cormann has been less direct, saying he believed the Coalition would “absolutely” make money from the NBN if it is passed.
“It would be a big mistake for the Government to be making decisions in that way,” he said.