SkyDigital viewers who receive only the free channels are now getting a message to upgrade to one of Sky’s subscription packages, even when watching unencrypted channels like Sky News – writes Barry Fox in this week’s trade mag ERT.
Following the BBC’s decision to unencrypt its channels, the Solus card system – which enabled around one third of a million homes to receive ‘terrestrial’ channels like ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 is being abandoned – leaving viewers who want to watch these channels having to pay £12.50 per month (or £6.25 on special offer).
However, the message to upgrade is appearing on screen even when watching Sky News – a service that has always been unencrypted and will remain so for the foreseeable future. Clearly, Sky is hoping to boost its enormous coffers (£3.186 billion turnover for the year to June 30) any way it sees fit, even if it means confusing Sky News viewers into thinking they need to pay for a service they don’t have to.
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