Skip Navigation

Round up of current on-demand TV services
Monday 05 February 2007 18:56:29 by Andrew Ferguson

Broadband is set to gain a larger presence in peoples living rooms as the various on-demand TV packages launch. The BBC has published a round-up of the on-demand services that are available now and will appear shortly. The article can be found on the BBC News website.

One on-demand service with a bit of a difference will be the changes to the Sky+ service expected in March 2007, where hidden hard disk capacity on newer Sky+ boxes will be used to store material automatically downloaded over the Sky satellite service. We presume rather than presenting hours of makeover shows to Sci-Fi fans it will look at viewing habits and download appropriately tagged material. The big advantage is that a satellite delivery mechanism does not use up any broadband connection allowance.

The subject of the impact of video over broadband on peoples usage allowances is hard to evaluate. Average usage may turn out to be 3GB (GigaBytes) per month (source: Ofcom report on new iPlayer service), but if you have a small 2GB allowance and are charged £2 per GB above that, then even free on-demand content could prove expensive. The previously announced price changes by BT Wholesale may help when they come into effect later this year, hopefully allowing providers to improve usage allowances. Service providers should be watching usage patterns closely and have plans afoot to add new capacity to cope as usage patterns change to these newer services. The days of when high usage could simply be labeled as illegally sharing masses of copyrighted material via peer to peer networks are coming to an end. One hour a day of on-demand content for 20 days a month soon mounts up to nearly 7GB of data downloaded.


Posted by JohnUK over 10 years ago
I sincerely hope when LLU hits 1.5million customers BT will extend the planned discounts in their CBC/UBC and other products for ISPs to help reduce the massive cap culture that has taken over ISPs at the moment.
Posted by _TRIaXOR_ over 10 years ago
Personally I hope CBC/UBC is scrapped and is switched to back to Classic, CBC/UBC have killed a good number of smaller ISPs and now that LLU has reached 1.5 Million lines, BT have absolutely no excuse to charge with these pricing models.
Posted by ismoore999 over 10 years ago
The idea to watch off-line by out of hours downloads seems a good one. Why can't more ISP's take the pricing model of Freedom2Surf who don't count downloads between 1:00 and 6:00, a time when I would imagine network traffic is minimal at present?
Posted by zenops over 10 years ago
I think the price of bandwidth needs to drastically reduce if we are to see real world Video on Demand Services. This article published recently gives a very good indication of costs to provide these services.

watching content offline which does not count towards your bandwidth allowance is a step in the right direction.

Posted by herdwick over 10 years ago
"I hope CBC/UBC is scrapped and is switched to back to Classic" - you cannot be serious - 2M service for £45/month anyone ? Heaven knows what Max would be under the "Classic" model. CBC drastically reduced the costs of higher speed services.
Posted by sponge34 over 10 years ago
>>CBC drastically reduced the costs of higher speed services.

At the price of your ability to actually use the service - it is no good having a service which winds up costing the same if you actually use it... I bet if you work out your charge for 'excess' use and add it to your Max service monthly bill, it won't be far short of the 'Classic' model.

After all, BT are not known for genuine price reductions - they tend to fiddle around so that their revenue stays level or increases, which is fair enough after all they have their shareholders to think of.
Posted by _TRIaXOR_ over 10 years ago
"You cannot be serious - 2M service for £45/month anyone?"

For unlimited unFUPed connection whereas now its "here, have an 8Mb for £15, did we mention you can only download 2GB?"

Yes I AM serious.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 10 years ago
herdwick, £45 for a service I could USE? Yes, please.
Posted by herdwick over 10 years ago
A 2 Mbits/s connection on Standard charging is £44.65 per month for the end connection alone, £34.85 more than CBC.

Standard centrals are a lot cheaper than CBC but you can't save £34 if you're only paying a tenner towards Central costs to start with.

Standard Charging is available today for ISPs to use, but it won't work in the market.

There are plenty of Max accounts with 50 GB/month or more, especially off-peak, for less than the cost of a 2M standard charging end connection. Home Max 90 from an Entanet reseller, to pick one at random.
Posted by Dawn_Falcon over 10 years ago
"Standard Charging is available today for ISPs to use"

Oh? It was my understanding that it was NOT. Further, as long as your attitude is taken then of course there won't be and bandwidth limits will continue to drop.
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 10 years ago
Standard Charging is still available, and is penciled in for price cuts of around 1-2% in May 2007.

The problem is that service providers cannot mix it, i.e. you cannot have 2 x CBC BT Centrals and 1 x Standard BT Central.

Standard pricing was/is controlled by a formula known as the Margin Squeeze Test, which puts Home 500 at £13 a month, and Home 2000 at £38 per month, imagine what Max would be priced at?

It seems safe to suggest that with standard pricing ADSL take-up of anything beyond a 0.5 or 1Mbps product would be minimal.
You must be logged in to post comments. Click here to login.