Sky’s been teasing details of its new entry into the IPTV wars for a couple of months now, and thankfully it’s finally delivered. Now TV is now available for £15 a month, or on a PAYG basis from 99p a movie, delivered straight to your connected device of choice.
Sky’s going to support a plethora of devices — from consoles and set-top boxes, to tablets and smartphones (both Android and iOS) — great for those attempting to cut the proverbial cord. At launch there’ll be support for the Mac and PC, Android and iOS, with Xbox and YouView taking it into your living room. Sky’s working on getting it on as many devices as possible, including the PS3 and Roku, so hopefully it’ll hit something you’ve got soon.
You’ll be able to stream movies over both Wi-Fi and 3G, which is great for those out and about. Now TV will kick off with access to Sky’s movie catalogue, directly competing with the likes of Netflix and LoveFilm; Sky’s TV and sports offerings will join the roster a little later. Unfortunately there’s no HD streaming on offer right now, but Sky’s “working” to bring HD streaming to the Xbox 360, at the very least. How long that’ll take is anyone’s guess.
Individual shows start at 69p an episode ramping up to £3.49, with a “Movie Pass” subscription service available that includes all-you-can-eat films and access to Sky’s 11 movie channels — quite a flick-filled proposition if you think about it. Sky grabs movies up to a year ahead of the likes of Netfix and LoveFilm too, but it’s pretty pricey at almost triple the cost of the others.
It’s interesting to see that Now TV is “powered by Sky” rather than being Sky’s Now TV, falling in line with The Cloud, powered by Sky — this is obviously Sky’s step back in branding for its non-core offerings. Considering Sky’s got a raft of decent content, from movies and American TV shows, to almost every sport under the Sun, Now TV certainly looks like a compelling option for the future. Whether movies alone are enough to drag you away from others, I’m not sure.
£15 a month is certainly a big dent in your streaming budget, and it almost seems like a gateway drug to a full Sky subscription. Still, you’ll get many more “premium” movies on Now TV sooner than you would on Netflix or LoveFilm, plus you don’t have to subscribe — you can grab the movies you want on a PAYG basis, I guess. You’ll even be able to stream it to your brand new YouView box, if that’s the way you roll.