Sky TV looks set to become the first broadcaster outside of the far east to offer its TV channels to mobile viewers. In a speech given at the Royal Television Society conference today in Cambridge COO Richard Freudenstein confirmed that its news, sports and movie channels would be available to 3G mobile phone owners 24 hours a day.
The service, which is slated to start in months, will be paid for via monthly subscription.
There’s very little flesh to put on this particular bone at the moment other than to say that we suspect that Sky has done deals with networks, and that the service will be available initially to Orange subscribers via its already up and running mobile TV service (pictured above), with Vodafone and possibly 3 to follow soon after.
Its seems that Sky will stream the channels using the web rather than opt for one of the new digital TV services that are being developed such as DVB-H. It seems highly likely though that the services will migrate to DVB-H and possibly even DMB (which Samsung was championing the other week at the IFA exhibition).
Sky also confirmed that it has major plans to offer its services online. ‘New Ethernet connections will allow us to deliver services such as video on demand (VOD) over a broadband pipe as well as over satellite,’ Richard Freudenstein, the company’s chief operating officer, said.
‘Over time we’ll have a hybrid model, satellite augmented by broadband,’ a Sky spokesman told The Times on Friday.
Interestingly Freudenstein added that while a date has not been set for the new VOD services, the newest Sky+ boxes have extra memory that is currently not used, suggesting that some of the hardware requirements are already in place.
As we already know Sky is also preparing the release of a VOD service that would let subscribers watch movies and sports on their PCs.