Sky Unveils Pricing of U.K. Premium Service Sky Q

BSkyB CEO Jeremy Darroch Headshot - P 2012
Courtesy of BSkyB

BSkyB CEO Jeremy Darroch Headshot - P 2012

The pan-European pay TV giant has called the service its "most significant" new product since it launched HD packages about 10 years ago.

Pan-European pay TV giant Sky on Friday unveiled prices for its Sky Q, a new premium service eco-system that it announced in November and called it the "most significant" new product since it launched HD packages about 10 years ago.

The eco-system of set top-boxes, hubs and apps will allow for "fluid viewing" across various screens, with Sky saying it was the "biggest reimagining" of the company's services. The new service is separate from Sky's traditional satellite TV offerings and its previously launched Internet-only video service Now TV. It  includes live and on-demand content, a new remote control and new content accessible via TV screens.

Sky Q allows families to watch on up to three separate TVs and two tablets, plus do four recordings at the same time without affecting live viewing. It also makes online video content, such as YouTube and Vevo, accessible via TV screens.

The company said the set-up costs would start at $141.70 (99 pounds). The typical monthly cost for existing Sky+ subscribers will be around $17.20 (12 pounds) extra compared with their current package cost, while for new customers joining Sky, the monthly cost for Sky Q will start at $60.17 (42 pounds), the company said. 

Stephen van Rooyen, chief marketing, sales & digital officer at Sky, said: “We’ve had a fantastic reaction to Sky Q. So I’m delighted to reveal the news that people will be able to get Sky Q for our lowest ever set-up cost for a new premium product."

Sky Q will launch in the U.K. and Ireland on Feb. 9, with installations starting at the end of the month, with Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland in Italy and Germany, respectively, expected to also launch it in the future at their discretion.

"Sky Q is Sky's main weapon in seeing off the threat from BT and Netflix to its market leadership over the next decade,” said David Mercer, analyst at Strategy Analytics' digital consumer practice. “Sky Q's improved functionality shows that multi-screen viewing and fast access to video-on-demand content are seen as the key battles to win. Also, the addition of a touch-pad to the remote control is particularly interesting - being the first significant change to something that's hardly changed over the last 10 years."

21st Century Fox owns a 39 percent stake in Sky.