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Stan Sport review: More than just rugby
For better or for worse, Stan Sport is the only place to watch big-ticket rugby union.
It wasn’t so long ago that a starry-eyed telco sought to stand up to the sporting exclusivity of Foxtel by pinching local cricket and netting a whole lot of big-ticket international soccer. While good intentioned, Optus Sport had a rocky launch and, these days, is only essential for soccer diehards.
Meanwhile, Kayo is Foxtel’s answer to those who want to cut cables and not be reliant on a Foxtel box or the less-than-stellar Foxtel Now. And while Optus didn’t kick it out of the park with what amounted to single-sport dominance with Optus Sport, that hasn’t stopped entertainment streaming service Stan from lining up a sideline penalty kick from over halfway and having a punt at scoring subs from rugby union fans.
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Stan Sport plans and pricing
At the time of writing, it costs $54 a month to have a wealth of sports content via Foxtel Now. Kayo Sports is the cheaper alternative, with the same content albeit with prices at $25 for Kayo One (one HD stream), $30 for Kayo Basic (two HD streams) and $35 for Kayo Premium (three HD streams).
While Stan Sport's pricing is clearly built to compete with Kayo, it’s sad to see Stan Sport mirror the Foxtel approach of forcing punters to pay for a Stan subscription before being able to pay for a Stan Sport add-on. That’s not so bad if you already have a Stan subscription, then you’re only weighing up the $15 Stan Sport add-on fee. If not, it costs $25 for Stan Sport via Basic (one SD stream), $31 for Stan Sport via Standard (three HD streams), and $36 for Stan Sport via Premium (four 4K streams).
It's also worth flagging that Stan Sport has gone up from $10 to $15 in the last couple of years.
How does Stan Sport compare?
Sports and quality
to $35/mth for Premium
|Up to 3 devices (Premium)||View plans|
also included with Apple One (from $21.95/mth)
|6 devices with Family Sharing||View plans|
Digital catch-up service
to $36/mth for Premium
|Up to 4 devices (Premium)||View plans|
|3 devices||View plans|
|From $13.99/mth||2 devices||View plans|
Which sports are on Stan Sport?
At launch, Stan Sport only offered rugby union, which it had then recently swiped from Foxtel. Nowadays, Stan Sport has the following sport options:
- Tennis (Australian Open, United Cup, Wimbledon and others.)
- Soccer (UEFA Champions League, Europa League, Europa Conference League and Super Cup)
- Rugby union (Six Nations, Super Rugby Pacific, World Cup and others)
- Motorsport (SpeedSeries, IndyCar, WRC and others)
- Professional Fighters League
- UCI cycling
Stan Sport also lists cricket in its dedicated drop-down menu, but the content isn’t there to justify its inclusion. At the time of writing, there was a single Team Cricket vs Team Rugby match replay, two cricket documentaries, and that was it. Whichever sport you choose, the sections are padded with ‘Enjoy more entertainment on Stan’ sections with a tenuous range of options which are, apparently, enjoyed by fans of that sport (with a healthy smattering of crossover in recommended content).
What devices is Stan Sport available on?
Stan Sport works on any device that supports Stan, which makes sense given Stan Sport is a navigation tab nestled between ‘Kids’ content and ‘My List’.
- Samsung TVs (2013–2020 models)
- LG TVs (2013–2022 models)
- Sony TVs (selected 2014–2020 models)
- Hisense TVs (selected 2015–2020 models)
- Panasonic TVs (selected 2017–2019 models)
- TCL TVs (2016–2019 smart TV models)
- Philips Android TVs (2016–2017 models)
- Kogan SmarterTV (all models)
- Toshiba TVs (all Toshiba Android TVs)
- FFalcon TVs (all models)
- Eko (all Eko Android models)
- PlayStation consoles (PS3, PS4, PS5)
- Xbox consoles (Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S)
- Apple TV
- Android TV
- Fetch TV
- Telstra TV
- Amazon Fire TV
- iOS phones or tablets (iOS 11.0 and above)
- Android phones or tablets (Amndroid 5.0 and above)
- Google Chrome (107+ on Windows 7 and later or MacOS 10.01 and later)
- Microsoft Edge (v107+ on Windows 10 and later)
- Firefox (version 88+ on Windows 7 and later or MacOS 10.12 and later)
- Safari (10+ on MacOS 10.10 and later)
What’s Stan Sport like to use?
Stan Sport isn’t a separate service, which means you can use your usual Stan login details to access it via your Stan account. There’s a very obvious full-caps “SPORT” tab at the top of the Stan home screen, which you select to get to all of the sports content. Alternatively, hover over ‘SPORT’ and select the code you’re most interested in.
The Stan Sport interface is easy to learn because it has a logical layout. Featured content is in a carousel up the top, with a choice of different sports codes below (where relevant). Below that is a list of live and upcoming sports, followed by a breakdown of extras and replays. I particularly enjoy that Stan Sport replays for popular content tend to offer a full match replay, a shorter 20-minute replay and then a mini replay of about 10 minutes.
Less popular sports content tends to be relegated to full match replays. Still, whether it’s a live stream or replay, content loads incredibly fast, and Stan plays nice with most virtual private network (VPN) services, meaning it’s great for expats or keeping up with sport while travelling. Start with Windscribe VPN, ExpressVPN and PureVPN if you’re interested in streaming Kayo with a VPN.
Stream quality is determined by both content and your subscription tier, but it reaches up to 4K, which is a great point of difference. That said, I did find myself lamenting the absence of Kayo features, like ‘No Spoilers!’ and the option to stream multiple sports in a split-screen view. Outside of the addition of extra sports, the biggest improvement to Stan Sport in the past couple of years is a fidelity boost.
In the past, an alleged HD stream had average quality, making it hard to spot player jersey numbers even on a 4K TV that was upscaling the stream via Nvidia Shield TV Pro. Nowadays, that isn’t an issue. The only time I’ve seen a Stan Sport stream suffer is when it first starts, as Stan is a little too eager to play content before first buffering to a decent fidelity. That’s a minor quibble, though, and I appreciate getting into a game faster, particularly if I’ve missed kick-off.
How much data does Stan Sport use?
All Stan content, including Stan Sport, lets you change the quality of the stream by using the settings cog during playback. Select from Auto, Ultra (4K), High (HD), Med (SD) or Low (SD) options. Not every Stan Sport stream is available in 4K but you can expect the ones that are to use around 7GB per hour.
The table below outlines the bandwidth requirements and data usage for Stan Sport:
Data usage (per hour)
Sports-loving streamers should opt for a mobile plan with at least 40GB of data to stream Stan Sport on the go. Below are some popular mobile plan picks from our database.
For home streamers, we recommend streaming with at least an NBN 50 plan to ensure there’s enough bandwidth to stream Stan Sport on multiple screens at up to 4K resolution. Here are some popular NBN 50 plans from our comparison engine.
Is Stan Sport worth paying for?
The value of Stan Sport is ultimately determined by two things: whether you already have a Stan subscription and whether you’re into enough of the sports on offer to justify the cost. Kayo has dozens of sports, so there’s always something to watch. Stan Sport doesn’t have that luxury. Admittedly, if you are into the growing range of sports content, though, Stan Sport is worth considering.
How we review sports streaming services
Reviewing a sports streaming service starts with the price. Foxtel used to be the only way to watch sports, so costs are taken in relation to how much it costs to get sports via Foxtel Now. The more sports a service offers, the better the overall value, but we do factor in the quality of the sporting codes available.
The next step is to check out features like how many simultaneous streams are available and the quality of those streams. We much prefer 1080p streaming as a minimum, but bonus points if 4K streaming is available.
We then spend time streaming the sports, taking note of any features like multi-view videos or user-interface detractors that get in the way of sports.