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Telus TV features, prices, questions


I'm confused about the Telus TV options. I'm looking for a straightforward chart of the actual channels available in each package, and prices.


Is the PDF for Optic TV valid? Where are HBO channels? Can multiple Premium blocks be purchased or only multiple Theme blocks ("from $9/mo")? What is the cost of additional Premium blocks? Can you pick 5 additional channels for $5/mo total, even with 4 themes and some other premium?


Also, reading this forum tells me that many people complain about picture quality. Supposedly Telus planned an update but it required a firmware update on their Telus box system and that didn't happen. Does that mean watching with the App on an android box (chromecast?) will not have better picture when this firmware thing eventually happens since there is no firmware on that? Is 4K supported on the non Telus generic android boxes running the app, or on the browser app in Windows?


Will users of the app be able to pause and resume / fast forward live TV?  So many posts on this forum seem to get replies that it "may be coming soon" but my family has been used to such simple features for 20 years now. I'm worried that this new Telus TV cloud system is still missing a lot of what we take for granted and assumed it would have.


I've previously asked about Firestick support. Is there anything official & firm from Telus? Or is it going to be "may be coming soon" forever?


And how do you separate the viewing and cloud recordings for young children, teenagers, and parents in the same home? PW protected, across all apps (apple, android, windows website) as one would expect or "not yet, maybe soon"? I am not finding much on detailed info on "Telus TV" on this website only Optik or Pik which is similar but always ends up talking about old features or doesn't sound up to date.  Frustrating.


TELUS Team Member
TELUS Team Member

The combos for Optik TV are very flexible, so you can pick and choose what works for you. It does make the decision process a little bit more complicated; there isn't really a 'combo A includes channels X, Y, Z'. It's more like combo A gives your choice of theme packs X, Y, Z and premium options 1, 2, 3. 


Yes, that pdf is accurate for the most part (looks like it's from late 2023, but not a ton has changed). Most everything is available a la carte. Premium options vary in price from $13 to $20, depending on what package and premium you choose (Apple TV+ is $13, Netflix Premium is $17 and Crave is $20, for example). Adding 5 additional channels is $20, while individual channels are $5 to $7 each. HBO is included in Crave, which includes the 2 HBO channels, 4 Crave movie channels and the entire Crave, Showtime and HBO On Demand library. Putting your combo together at is the best bet to see what fits for you.


There is a firmware update to the TELUS TV Digital Box coming soon that will resolve the issues between HDR and SDR switching; this issue seems to be more prevalent on OLED TVs. Some users report a better experience on Sony TV, Nvidia Shield and Chromecast with Google TV, all of which run on the Android TV platform. 4K channels are supported on the TELUS TV+ app for Android TV, but not (yet) on Apple TV, mobile or browser. 


The TELUS TV+ app for mobile devices, Apple TV, browser and Android TV does have pause live, restart for 30 hours, rewind, fast forward where permitted by content providers, and cloud recordings for 90 days. Fire TV is not yet supported, but is on the roadmap.


The TELUS TV Digital Box and TELUS TV+ app have the ability to set 6 unique user profiles that apply across devices. You can turn on parental PINs to block content by maturity rating and purchase PINs to block rentals and purchases. Each profile has its own recordings, recommendations, favourite channels list, watch list and resume feed.


Optik TV and Pik TV are the individual TV products (Pik TV is no longer for sale) while TELUS TV+ is the app that all customers can use. 


Hopefully this clears things up a bit...

Thank you for the response.


Can you please clarify what "fast forward where permitted by content providers" precisely means? 


Is it possible that I record a program and later find I'm not allowed to fast forward through it? That would be painful. Is it channel or program specific? Which ones currently prohibit it?  What if more content providers start to force everyone to watch ads?


Is it possible that I pause live TV for 20 mins, and then find I'm not allowed to fast forward? How do I know which channels this applies to? It sounds worrying, and more limiting than an old fashioned PVR with a hard drive.


Does the "go back 30 hours" feature allow you to record a program that was broadcast 30 hours ago? Can you fast forward in those?


Sometimes sports events go long. What happens to programs set to record after them that don't start on time? Can you set default buffers around the program (minutes before, minutes after), or specific long record times for particular programs?


Regarding firestick -- anything on a roadmap could be years away or forgotten as firesticks might move away from android. The app currently installs on firestick (sideload) and appears to work for guest login, but for some reason isn't officially supported but I don't know why.


And, just out of curiosity, what if someone recorded everything? Could they then scroll back up to 90 days and watch anything from the past 90 days? (I guess this is really asking: why limit it to 30 hours and not 90 days if the back end is holding everyone's recordings for 90 days? license rights or tech limitation?)


Also, it would be nice if the user profiles had optional pw/pins like netflix to prevent sibling mischievousness.


TELUS Team Member
TELUS Team Member

In general, content providers (Bell, Rogers, Corus etc.) make their money by forcing us to watch ads. They limit fast forward on almost everything except recordings. This includes Live TV, Restart and On Demand.  Fast forward on recordings is almost ubiquitous. The only channel that I’m aware that blocks fast forward on recordings is Mediaset Italia (an Italian language channel).


You can only pause Live TV for 15 minutes, and your options are that you can start from where you paused, or jump to the live airing point; this is across all channels as content providers block fast forward on paused live streams. If you want to be able to fast forward, you should set a recording. You can set a recording and watch programs that are in progress, which gives you full rewind and fast forward capabilities. The way I’d explain it: pause live to go to the washroom. Record to skip commercials. Example: the hockey game starts at 7. You can start recording it at any point from 7 until the end time. You can then pause, rewind and fast forward at will. Obviously you can’t rewind to before your recording started or fast forward into the future.


Go back 30 hours is known as Restart; you cannot record programs that have already aired (we don't have a time machine!). Generally, fast forward is blocked on restarted programs. A large chunk of programming is also available On Demand, though fast forward is blocked on many On Demand programs. 


Recordings are based on what appears in the guide. The recording will start at the scheduled guide time (actually, 2 minutes early) even if it starts late. The default run-long buffer is 60 minutes for all live airing sports and 90 minutes for live airing tennis matches. We are still working on manual buffer options and extensions for non-sports programming, though these running long is much less frequent outside of the Oscars.


The best answer on Fire is ‘because Amazon…’ Some companies are simply harder to work with than others.  


Recordings have unlimited capacity, so you could record everything (to a maximum of 6 programs concurrently) and it will be available for 90 days from when it was recorded. Recordings and Restart are 2 technically distinct capabilities; the 90 day Recording limitation is server capacity and the 30-hour Restart limit is licensing rights.


Profiles: this is a great idea; it’s in our plans.

Useful info, thanks, but it makes the Restart feature sound pretty useless. No one can endure watching ads anymore, and if it is watchable I don't see why it wouldn't be "recordable+fastforwardable" (no time machine needed since the bytes are obviously there). People are used to hard drive PVRs where it was possible, and they aren't paying more (or going back to olden times) to be forced to watch ads.


On Bell's Fibe TV ( & Firestick App) you can pause Live TV for a while and then skip forward and back (5 second increments) to skip commercials on Bell owned TSN channel. Are you saying Telus doesn't allow that?


Every Sunday during Golf & NFL season, the show "60 minutes" and all subsequent shows are pushed back since the golf/nfl usually goes long. If you set those shows to record I guess it would never fully record if you can't set it to record for an extra hour or 90 minutes like on hard drive PVRs?


And I'm really surprised a big company like Telus would have trouble getting their app on the Amazon store if it already doesn't use the Google Services Framework stuff. There are many simple solo dev apps on there, and one would think Amazon Firestick would gladly want to offer a competitive selection of apps with Chromecast/google play.

TELUS Team Member
TELUS Team Member

The usefulness of Restart functionality really depends on your use case. If you forgot to set a recording, you can restart it and watch with ads. It's a nice failsafe. If you don't subscribe to recordings or have Pik TV, you can restart it. I agree that people don't want to watch ads, so they can record, but TELUS doesn't own the rights to any of this content; so we are bound to what Bell, Rogers, Corus et al dictate. This means advertisements. The content margins just aren't there anymore; this is why Netflix has tripled in price, and have introduced ads along with Prime. I can't speak to Bell's capabilties, but since they own the content rights in Canada, they can (perhaps anti-competitively) allow the skipping of ads on their content on their platform. I'd love to know if you can skip ads on Rogers or Corus content on Fibe...but TELUS has to adhere to the content license holders agreements.


Hard drive PVRs are great until they fail or until you want to watch recordings on the go. When recordings are stored in the cloud, you're not subject to hard disk failure, and you have access to recordings on the go.


If the guide data matches 60 minutes, it will record the full show, but if it doesn't start on time, it will not capture the end. As mentioned, manual start/end times are on the roadmap. The (admittedly not ideal) failsafe would be to record subsequent programs if it always runs long.


I can't speak to negotiations between Amazon and TELUS, but each Canadian telco seems to have taken a different approach to app availability. TELUS prioritized Apple TV and Android TV first while it appears Bell prioritized Fire TV.

On you can tune to any channel and pause (buffer) for 20 minutes and then start watching and skip any commercials.  Sportsnet (Rogers) and HGTV (Corus) channels included.

If you can't do this on Telus with live TV that is a very big regression. People are used to buffering live TV & going to the bathroom, just to skip ads.


I've been trying to see what it will cost. Some channels only seem to be in a Theme, but don't seem to be available as a Pick 5 option or Additional Channel. Do you know why?


Example: On the guide (not logged in) has 725 as BBC Earth.

It is in the above Optic TV PDF in both a Theme pack and as a Pick 5 option / a-la-carte. 

It is in a Theme pack on but not as a Pick 5 option nor an Additional Channel.

Similar for BBC First.