BSkyB has announced plans to launch a Sky Internet TV service later this year. The news follows the company's announcement that its BBC iPLayer would soon arrive on Sky Anytime+ and that Anytime+ would soon to be available to customers on other ISPs.
BSkyB plans to launch the Internet TV service in the first half of this year and is hoping to provide customers with access to Sky movies and Sky Sports without the need for them to sign a contract. Sky says customers will connect to the service via set top boxes, PCs, Macs, laptops, tablets, mobile phones, connected TVs and games consoles, which suggests both Microsoft and Sony will eventually partner with BSkyB on this one, and that the service will exist alongside Sky Go. The main difference between Sky Go and the new offering is the lack of contract, with customers paying either for only what they want to watch (on a per-movie basis, for example), or a monthly fee for unlimited access.
According to the Telegraph, the announcement has ruffled some feathers. Though it would put the company in a position to better compete with Amazon-owned on-demand service LoveFilm and new-arrival Netflix, there's concern among analysts that BSkyB is cannibalising its own customer base with this new service. Analysts also say that the move suggests the company isn't confident in its current business model.
BSkyB has not given a name or release date for the service, nor has the company discussed pricing.