Sky and the BBC are still discussing ways to place the broadcaster’s catch-up TV service on the platform operator’s set-top box, despite apparent opposing views on the matter.
BSkyB (NYSE: BSY) has previously said it wants to offer its customers access to individual BBC shows only through its own Sky+ programme guide. But the BBC refuses to syndicate its shows to anyone in this way and prefers instead to deploy its generic, web-based “iPlayer”-badged product, which is now on around 300 devices including connected TVs.
That would rule out Sky+, which BSkyB tells paidContent does not include a web browser. But there may yet be a solution. Sky tells us…
BSkyB last month added UKTV (owned by BBC Worldwide and Virgin Media) as its first VOD content partner. Its shows will be made available through Sky Anytime+, the Sky+ box’s recently-launched VOD-over-broadband service.
That could provide a template for a BBC deal, but would appear to require more video transcoding and distribution work than the redeployable iPlayer website. Still, Sky’s scale may necessitate a separate build.
Last week, BBC on-demand manager Daniel Danker told paidContent he is speaking with broadcast platforms including Virgin Media (NSDQ: VMED) to offer iPlayer programme metadata – platforms to display BBC VOD listings inside their own EPGs, but the shows would be played inside the iPlayer web app.
All of this would get murkier still if Sky embarks on discussions with commercial broadcasters. They love their iPlayer-like, brand name badged services like ITV (LSE: ITV) Player and 4oD because they can sell video pre-rolls against their own shows. But would Sky request a slice of those ad sales for any commercial VOD its box may end up hosting?