A quick review of the Telstra TV3 (I have a Foxtel Now box, native Google Chromecast dongle, AppleTV4, LG WebOS TV).
Overall I wouldn't recommend the box due to the following key issues:
1. For free to air - the interface is clunky and slow, there are no favourites and no ability to remove channels (hence, navigating from, say Channel 9HD to SBS and back again is onerous). If your internet is ever unavailable (has been happening a lot during NBN rollout) then the live TV misbehaves - with no TV guide and VERY slow channel startup - so it must be linking programme info to the internet and trying to update even when internet isn't available
2. Whilst chrome cast is builtin it in - it has been highly disabled (intentionally). This means integration with Google Home (such as "Hey Google - play Homeland on Netflix on my TV") doesn't work. This makes no sense at all and is a great example of the Telstra approach to things. i.e. lock the customer experience down - even if that disables the customer experience.
3. The Google Play store has been the most cut down I have seen on any of these types of devices. So no radio apps, no amazon prime, no ES File Explorer. Only around 20-30 highly specific video apps out of the thousands that are supported by Android + Roku.
4. The remote control and UI is LAGGY. Annoying so. This results in often over scrolling. Great example is Home (wait while things are being "setup" *everytime*? what.. btw?)... Settings... Click right to go the Network (wait 2 seconds)... etc... A fast user interface is a key part of the user experience. This fails horribly.
5. Several small quirks - if the above wasn't bad enough, the volume on the remote stops working at random, the wireless drops out (I have 16 devices constantly connected to a Google Mesh, not one of which has an issue), the live TV occasionally reverts to internet stream for no reason (impacting quality and absorbing bandwidth)
So overall - the locked down environment, slow user interface, lack of integration with default google casting and several small quirks (by themselves would be "ok")... makes this a terrible experience. My girlfriend has asked me to remove it as it drives her crazy (vs Foxtel Now box or AppleTV or LG WebOS or Google Chromecast/Phone all of which she is fine with).
There you go - good luck!
Was this helpful?