Nick Summers is a technology journalist for The Next Web. He writes on all sorts of topics, although he has a passion for gadgets, apps and Nick Summers is a technology journalist for The Next Web. He writes on all sorts of topics, although he has a passion for gadgets, apps and video games in particular. You can reach him on Twitter, circle him on Google+ and connect with him on LinkedIn.
Satellite television broadcaster BSkyB has launched all six of its Sky Sports channels on NOW TV today, its on-demand streaming service that competes with the likes of Netflix and LoveFilm Instant.
The offer, announced in January, means that non-Sky TV members can now access the company’s portfolio of sports channels without being tied down to an expensive monthly subscription.
All six Sky Sports channels are being offered at £9.99 for 24 hours of unlimited access ($15.80). That figure can be taken on its own, or combined with the service’s existing Sky Movies package, currently priced at £14.99 ($27.30) per month.
The idea is that the flat rate is a cheaper and more flexible option for accessing Sky Sports. That’s certainly true, given that the Sky Sports Pack is currently £21 ($32) per month on Sky, on top of one of the basic packages which normally costs around £20 ($30).
If you plan on watching the English Premier League every weekend, shelling out £20 on a weekly basis isn’t the most cost-effective solution. For the big occasions, however, or a gathering where the cost can be split across multiple people, it could prove to be a popular solution with sports fans in the UK.
Sky Sports is known in England for its extensive football (or soccer, for you American readers) coverage, although it’s also one of the few British broadcasters to show golf, cricket, tennis and rugby on a regular basis.
It also has Sky Sports News, one of the only channels dedicated to breaking news and live updates, as well as Sky Sports F1, a channel dedicated entirely to Formula 1 motorsport.
NOW TV is available on PC, Mac, Xbox 360, Roku and YouView streaming boxes, as well as via a native app for iOS and Android devices. However, despite being backed by BSkyB, the service has failed to resonate with the British public. The service had 25,000 subscribers as of December 2012, which is dwarfed by the one million subscribers that Netflix picked up in the UK during its first seven months of operation.
There’s many reasons as to why NOW TV is struggling. Alongside its Sky Go and Sky Go Extra services, its possible that BSkyB is failing to communicate the potential of its service to new customers. Netflix is also pushing its new exclusive TV show, House of Cards, with extensive marketing materials, grabbing the public’s attention and most of the headlines.
Sky Sports could be part of the solution, but unless NOW TV can offer an affordable and superior proposition to Netflix and LoveFilm, it will continue to struggle to gain ground in the UK.
Image Credit: LGEPR/Flickr
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