BSkyB have launched a standalone iPhone application for it’s UK SkySports News service encorporating digital news, live video and audio streaming as well as TV listings.
The free app allows fluid segmentation of sports news as well as live scores, fixtures and tables. It’s not clear whether this will replace BSkyB’s Football Score Centre app at current but there is definitely a duplication of content between the two.
The much loved Sports news TV channel has recently been removed from the UK’s free digital TV service Freeview and is now only available on Sky itself, causing much heart ache to avid followers. The app will provide a much needed relief in light of this change with the ability to stream the channel live as well as listening to the radio version.
This is BSkyB’s 9th entry into the iPhone market [see below] and is a clear example of how brands can utilise the investment they place in services on other platforms to add value for money to consumers.
A quick round up of the other 8 apps currently available in the UK iTunes app store include:
Sky + (Subscription Only, Free)
If you’re familiar with the service, this should be pretty straight forward, and extremely useful. The ability to record TV shows when out and about is a fantastic tool when you’ve forgotten to record the latest episode of Pineapple Studios. You will need to set up you’re Sky account to use this service as well as having your SkyID user name and password to hand. Click here to download the app.
Sky News ( Free)
The big brother of the SkySports News app, it lets you keep fully up to date with the top stories, with video and live streaming to boot. Sending in your own stories is also a snip and adds a nice level of interactivity to the service. Click here to download the app.
Sky Mobile TV (Subscription Only, Free)
The Mobile TV app adds substantial value to Sky customers subscriptions by being able to watch a host of TV on the go. At current though, this only applies to Sky Sports and ESPN channels. The service is free to Sky subscribers who have Sky Sports 1 & 2 on their books until the end of the year and will be charged £5.00 per month from January 2011, so well worth a try for the time being. Click here to download the app.
SkySports News Football Score Centre ( Free)
As mentioned, there is a lot of content duplication between this app and the newly released SkySports News app but as a standalone application, its great for keeping tabs on particular clubs and their fixtures, scores etc. With live commentary, line ups, post match reaction and a lovely photo of Jeff Stelling on start up, it’s great for any committed football follower. Click here to download the app.
SkySports Live Cricket Score Centre (Free)
The domestic season maybe coming to a close but with England’s final test against Pakistan looming, and the Ashes down under this Winter, this app will be key for checking in to the scores throughout the day. Click here to download the app.
The final 3 apps include Team Sky Cycling (Released 18 August, Free), Sky ShowBiz (Free) and Must Be The Music (Released 20 August, Free) which bring up the rest of the roster and are composed of similar news apps, or an accompanying service to the TV reality show.
With all these apps, unless subscription linked, free, they offer excellent value for money, so what next for Sky? Expanding the selection of programmes/channels available on the Mobile TV app would be a great start, while making it available to non-Sky customers on a subscription basis could be an easy win for BSkyB.
Sky’s music service, Songs, has made a faltering start so far and an accompanying iPhone app could definitely help the company build traction to its service in the shadow of We7 and Spotify.
Lastly, other platforms, with Android and BlackBerry having substantial market share, it would be well worth Sky’s investment in developing applications for those too.