BT today heralded a new era of competition in pay-TV by launching the UK’s best value deal for Sky Sports 1 and Sky Sports 2 for just £16.99 a month.
BT Vision customers can add the channels for the simple monthly price on a month-by-month contract. If they only want to add either one of Sky Sports 1 or Sky Sports 2 they can do so for only £11.99.*
Customers who are happy to commit to a bundle of broadband and calls for 24 months, can get an even better deal with the BT ‘total sports package’, starting at just £6.99 for Sky Sports 1, ESPN and ‘on demand’ sport from BT Vision or £11.99 for Sky Sports 1 and Sky Sports 2, ESPN and ‘on demand’ sport. The latter bundle works out £205 cheaper than Sky’s current equivalent deal and £281 cheaper than Virgin Media over a year.**
BT will be able to sign up customers for these packages from today, in plenty of time for the customer to enjoy the new Premier League football season, which starts on August 14.
Research by BT indicated that around 4m more people in the UK would like to sign up for Sky Sports channels, but felt that it was too expensive.
Gavin Patterson, chief executive of BT Retail, said: “Football fans will be cheering our new prices, which mark an end to paying for basic channels when you only want the sport.
“We expect that entry prices as low as £6.99 will welcome in a huge number of extra customers who’d love to enjoy these channels, but thought they were too expensive.
“A more competitive market will ensure that customers continue to get the best sport for the sharpest prices and this opening of the market will be in the best interests of customers.”
The start of a new more competitive market was sparked by a ruling from Ofcom, which obliged Sky to wholesale Sky Sports 1 and Sky Sports 2 at regulated prices to rivals such as BT.
As well as Premier League football, Sky Sports 1 and Sky Sports 2 screen Champions League football, test cricket and rugby union.
* new 12 month broadband and Vision contract required
** bundle of Sky Sports 1, Sky Sports 2, ESPN, broadband excluding line rental
***According to Sky.com, Sky Sports is available without a viewing pack, from £26pm. However, this can not be ordered online and when speaking to an advisor online or over the phone, BT was informed Sky Sports is only available with a viewing pack and that the website information was wrong.
CAVEAT: Comparison based on costs of taking a wireless broadband, calls and sports package. Excludes line rental. Content of packs differ, e.g. both Sky and Virgin include additional sports channels (i.e. Sky Sports 3, Sky Sports 4, ESPN America and, with Virgin Media only, ESPN HD); additional entertainment content (Sky Variety Pack or Virgin Media M+ TV pack); and unlimited broadband usage. Sky Talk includes evening calls to UK landlines. Based on packages available 30th June, 2010.
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