Saturday 21 October 2017

Say goodbye to traditional TV contract as Sky launches online-only service Now TV

‘Now TV’, run by Sky, will feature movies, sport and live television Stock Image
‘Now TV’, run by Sky, will feature movies, sport and live television Stock Image
Adrian Weckler

Adrian Weckler

So-called ‘cord cutting’ looks set to accelerate in Ireland as Sky prepares to launch an online-only TV service that doesn’t require traditional home TV connections or a contract.

‘Now TV’, run by Sky, will feature movies, sport and live television.

It can be used on almost any web-connected device and offers pay-as-you-go or contract options.

Already available in the UK, the Now TV service allows customers to buy monthly ‘passes’ with access to Sky Sport, Sky Movies, ordinary live channels or kids’ television stations.

In the UK, the service costs from £3 (€3.40) per month. Its sports service, which includes Premier League Football, costs from €40 per month.

Pricing for the Irish market has not yet been announced.

Read more: Now laptop, iPad and PC users will have to buy a TV licence

The service is available on phones, tablets and smart TV systems from Samsung, LG and others. It’s also available as a service on Apple TV and Google Chromecast.

The move is likely to accelerate diversification away from traditional TV habits in Ireland. Almost half of Irish people now watch video on a phone, while Nielsen studies show sharp declines in the number of people watching scheduled television as live.

On-demand services such as Netflix, Sky Go, YouTube and the RTE Player are already putting pressure on overall live television audiences, while bigger flagship phones from Samsung and Apple looks set to add to the diversification of video-watching.

Sky’s move also comes as the government considers amending the TV licence law to include all internet-accessible screens over 11 inches in size.

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