Sports driving Sky Go viewing

12.20 Europe/London, October 13, 2011 By Julian Clover

Around 10 per cent of Sky’s 10.3 million subscribers have tried the Sky Go portable television service, available on the Apple iPad and iPhone.
Holly Knill, head of Sky Player and Mobile TV, BSkyB told the IHS Screen Digest Future of Digital Media conference that the England v India cricket series in July had provided a significant spike in usage as subscribers took the pay-TV service into their offices. The highest Sky Go audience to date was for September’s Premier League clash between Manchester United and Chelsea.

The majority of Sky’s marketing effort for the Go brand has been around its sports channels, although there is also film, entertainment and news content available.
Echoing her former Sky colleague Gerry O’Sullivan’s comments about connected TV, Knill defended Sky’s lack of presence on the devices. “There are some pretty good connected TVs out there, but I haven’t been presented with compelling arguments as to why I should do something on connected TV.”
Knill said she wanted to ensure customers received a consistent Sky experience. “We want to take the confidence that people have in our EPG across to those other devices”. However, it was not just a matter of taking the core design across, but also how to find content.
Responding Samsung’s Dan Saunders said it was a misconception manufacturers wanted the end to end relationship. “In any deal it’s quite simple we’re responsible for the hardware and software platform and they’re responsible for the end to end relationship. You have to realise connected TVs are not as sophisticated as a set top box but they still provide an excellent user experience.”