Sky Deutschland announces 3D-ready HD PVR; iPad/iPhone appsTuesday, May 4th, 2010
Sky announces innovation initiative: New products make Better TV available Anytime and Anywhere
- Sky+: HDTV digital video recorder custom-made for high-value Sky programming
- Sky Multiroom: Sky programs can be viewed in multiple rooms at the same time
- Three great new Sky HD channels starting in August: Sky Sport HD2, Sky Cinema Hits HD, Sky Action HD
- Sky Anywhere: television and more on mobile devices, starting with the iPad later this month
COLOGNE/MUNICH — In May, Sky Deutschland (XETRA: SKYD.DE) is starting a new innovation initiative and is giving even more emphasis to ensure a Better TV experience for all its customers. Over the next few months new services will launch to increase continually the quality, value und convenience of Sky TV. Sky subscribers can look forward to Sky+, the first fully integrated HDTV digital video recorder/receiver which is optimally tailored for Sky programming, and which will come to the market in May. Furthermore, Sky Multiroom will launch this summer, offering a new concept for Sky programming in multi-person households. As the innovation leader for HDTV in Germany and Austria, Sky is also expanding its already-comprehensive HD service. Three exciting new HD channels are coming to Sky in August, bringing the total number of Sky HD channels to ten, extending Sky’s lead in top quality TRUE HD programming; the start of another channel is also planned soon. In addition, new and exciting mobile services and applications are planned in order to make Sky’s great programmes available anywhere and at anytime, beginning with a new service for the iPad later this month.
Brian Sullivan, Chief Executive Officer of Sky Deutschland: “Many Sky customers know and value the advantages of their Sky subscriptions and the great high-quality viewing experience we offer. Now, with our new innovations, we will enhance the Sky experience even more. It is only through bringing together top quality premium content at great value, and with an innovative, viewer-friendly service that we can reach the level of customer satisfaction to which we strive, and reward the loyalty of our customers.”
In May, Sky will begin offering the first HDTV digital video recorder for the optimal television experience with its top quality programming. Sky+ possesses numerous functions that provide optimum flexibility and comfort, as well as simple operability. The viewer can easily record shows with the push of a button on the remote control or program directly from the electronic program guide. For the many series fans among Sky subscribers, Sky+ also offers a unique Series Link recording function with which all episodes of a desired series are recorded automatically. Brian Sullivan: “Sky+ is the perfect chance for our customers to fully enjoy their Sky subscription. With Sky+, they’ll never miss their favourite program again.” Not only will viewers be able to select at anytime from their own personal archive, with time shift, the viewer can also pause live television, proceed to any point in time even before the recording ends, or jump to a determined point in the recording. Sky+ allows Sky subscribers to record both HD and SD program and simultaneously view another show. Sky+ set-top boxes receive all Sky channels as well as the free-to-air channels. Also, Sky+ is already prepared for future HD-3D broadcasts. Sky+ has a high capacity hard drive that can record up to 50 hours in HD quality or up to 100 hours in standard definition. Sky + will be available as a rental option for existing and new customers and will include installation support. Sky+ is initially only available for satellite reception; a cable variation is planned for later this year.
Sky Multiroom: New concept for Sky in multi-person households
Ever more subscribers want to watch Sky in different rooms at the same time. For this reason, Sky is now offering its customers the possibility to use a second smartcard with an additional receiver in the household for a discounted charge of 12 Euros per month (24 Euros when inclusive of the Bundesliga). With Sky Multiroom, which will start this summer, the entertainment company is accommodating the above-average number of multi-person households among its subscriber base. Eighty-six percent of Sky households consist of more than two people. By contrast, the average throughout Germany is 61 percent. Brian Sullivan: “Sky is the most family-friendly television company in Germany and Austria. Not only do we offer the best programming for the entire family, but with Sky Multiroom, the fight over the remote control has finally come to an end.”
Sky expands its market leading TRUE HD service at no added costs for Sky HD subscribers: Sky Sport HD2, Sky Cinema Hits HD and Sky Action HD will begin broadcasting in August
The HDTV offering from Sky, which is already the most comprehensive in Germany and Austria, is becoming even larger: Sky Sport HD2, Sky Cinema Hits HD and Sky Action HD will begin airing in August. Sky HD will then include ten channels, and shortly it will be expanded by another, which is still being planned. Brian Sullivan: “With Sky HD, we are offering the absolute best viewing experience and, in so doing, will cover all genres which viewers would like to see in HD quality. With an initial three more HD channels in top quality, we are expanding our unbeatable HD service. And even more channels will be added to this – just as our customers expect. Sky’s unique TRUE HD offering is the perfect complement to the over 16 million HD ready TV sets in Germany and Austria.”
As an expansion to Sky Sport HD, Sky Sport HD2 will show other top live sports in HD quality and will give the channel the possibility to show sporting events which are taking place parallel to one another in HD. Sky Cinema Hits HD and Sky Action HD are the HDTV versions of the film packages Sky Cinema Hits (successful films of recent years and US series) and Sky Action (films from the action, horror and sci-fi genres). Sky HD is available as an additional package for 5 or 10 euros (depending on the number of premium packages taken). The number of HD programs available to an HD customer is related to the respective standard definition premium packages taken. Currently, Sky HD consists of seven HD channels: Sky Sport HD, Sky Cinema HD, Eurosport HD, Disney Cinemagic HD, Discovery HD, National Geographic HD and History HD. The new HD channels are an addition to the HD line-up for Sky HD customers and future HDTV subscribers without additional added costs.
More innovative services and select top program content, Anytime and Anywhere
Several other innovative offers are planned for the summer: In the near future, Sky will be available for subscribers Anytime and Anywhere. In this regard, various mobile services and applications will come to the market, helping to bring a more convenient television experience to Sky customers. Among other things, applications are in the works for Apple’s iPad and the iPhone. Brian Sullivan: “We want to enable our customers to watch their favourite programs Anytime and Anywhere: Sky is the best television experience and we will make it available to our customers, no matter where and when they want it.”
The company has a history of repeatedly bringing TV innovations to the market and constantly forging ahead with new development: The start of digital television in Germany in 1996, the first Bundesliga conference in television in 2000, the first worldwide video-on-demand push service in TV quality in 2005, the first worldwide HDTV broadcast in the new MPEG4/H.264 standard also in 2005 and finally the first HD-3D production in Germany in March 2010 – these are just some examples of the innovative strength of the entertainment company.