Skip Navigation

Sky announce IP-enabled VoD service Anytime+
Thursday 03 June 2010 13:09:04 by John Hunt

Sky yesterday announced their anticipated Video on Demand service, Sky Anytime+, which will allow users to access an archive of TV content over a broadband connection through their Sky+ HD boxes. It is expected to launch later this year and offer around 1,000 hours of content from channels including Sky1, Sky Sports, Sky Movies and Sky Arts, and also includes other broadcasters such as ESPN and National Geographic. Movies are to be a key focus of the service with around 500 expected to be available at launch.

Only standard definition content will be available initially to ensure a high user experience which could be let down by slow broadband speeds. High Definition content could be offered in the future. A movie is expected to be around 1.3GB's in size which would take around a minute to start playing on a 2Meg or faster broadband connection but longer if you have a slower speed. Downloads can also be paused to allow the user to use the broadband connection for doing other things. The service will only be available to customers who have a Sky broadband connection initially which may limit the number of users that can use the service. The reasoning behind this is it gives Sky greater ability to tailor their network to the service and diagnose problems if these occur. It's not clear whether content downloaded via Anytime+ would count towards a users broadband usage allowance (although it would when rolled out to other broadband providers).

"We have optimised our network so that this service is the best it can be, but another ISP might shape the traffic at primetime, which could mean that content takes longer to stream.

We just want to be able to manage the service before we widen it to other networks. Within our own broadband network, we are more than confident that we can deliver without crashes and so on. We have planned against any major bottle necks on the launch day and we have learnt from past rollouts, so we are very confident that we won't have any major problems."

David Kelly (Senior product development manager) Sky

By not deploying HD content, Sky may also be limiting their userbase further as some will prefer to stick to watching high-definition content over standard-definition, but it could also attract people away from other providers


Posted by TonyHoyle over 6 years ago
So.. No HD (don't really see the justfication for this.. xbox live manages it with no problems) and their broadband only (for marketing purposes presumably.. not surprising as BT do the same).

Can't see the draw myself... I'd have to slash the speed of my broadband connection, get poorer service, and lose HD. No thanks.
Posted by AndrueC over 6 years ago
The ISP restriction issue is a total none-starter for me but I understand it at launch.

It would be far more useful with HD content though. At present there are enough +1 SD channels to allow you to work around schedule clashes. It's HD where scheduling clashes are most problematic. If the box could grab those overnight for playback later it would be far more useful.
Posted by Guest_Again over 6 years ago
Not for me. Wouldn't be worth it at all., :/
Posted by Dixinormous over 6 years ago
I get the idea of limiting it to Sky Broadband only, means they can employ QoS to guarantee the quality of the stream and avoid customer complaints due to ISP issues, however can't say I'm thrilled about it.
Posted by mishminx over 6 years ago
Less plus more minus, rather typical of Sky on the whole.
Posted by CaptainW over 6 years ago
@ all of the above posters

I don't understand your statements - this is something you can get as an added bonus, FREE and part of being a BB Unlimited customer (20Mb for £7.50) plus VoD - it's not like they're removing something to put this in folks.

I reckon we'll use it and it's a good add-on for nothing!
Posted by damien001 over 6 years ago
people are complaining because you can get HD on the 360 from sky and if you look at skys competitors (virgin and BBC) they offering HD. Also if the data is already on sky systems its not going to cost them as much
Posted by shaunhw over 6 years ago
As a sky TV sub I'd consider a Sky broadband connection, if they got their act together and offered static and multi I/P options. For now this is a (tv) show stopper, in more ways than one!!
Posted by chrysalis over 6 years ago
As expected it arrives, I told people on here sky were planning VOD over IP. They do plan to make it work on all isp's the sky bb only is just for start. So people with old sky+ boxes which do have a lan port wont get this I am guessing due to an old incompatible software.
Posted by xb0xguru over 6 years ago
Folks, it's not costing anything so it's a win regardless. They're just allowing VoD content already available on the PC to be played through the STB. Unless you have a crappy LCD TV, the picture will be more than watchable.
You must be logged in to post comments. Click here to login.