However, in an email sent to members on Friday, the satellite broadcaster announced it was temporarily stopping the PPV feature to make some improvements, meaning that only those who buy a monthly pass can access its movie library for now.
At launch, the service was limited to movies only, costing from between 99p and £3.99 per rental, with a £15 pay-monthly Sky Movies Pass also being made available. So this was very much aimed at gaining ground from Netflix/LoveFilm territory, and tapping the large swathes of TV viewers who don’t want to sign up to one of Sky’s pricier contracts.
So, while we have previously argued that the new non-subscription-based pricing model would change the UK TV landscape when it finally opened up to sports, it seems that it’s already fallen by the wayside, albeit only temporarily.
In the email to members, the announcement was consigned to a mere footnote, with the core message being that users could sign-up before 22 January to get 30 days for free, and after that it’s £8.99 a month for 3 months. It read:
“P.S. We’ve paused Pay & Play to make some improvements. As a result, we’ve updated our terms and conditions. Take a look at them here.”
In a note to Broadband TV News, Sky has confirmed that it was making changes to the way movies are presented, whatever that may mean. It also added that it would be taken offline until next year some time.
Hopefully by the time PPV is brought back to its online service, Sky Sports will get a look-in too.