NonprayingMantis:DickDastardly:nigelj:richms: They could drop the duplicate SD and HD versions and get the SD stuff off dirty old MPEG2 and have room for heaps more channels. But that would mean writing off a whole lot of STB's that are still earning money for them so I dont think it will happen soon.
Actually from what I've heard both Foxtel (I may be particularly mistaken on Foxtel) and Sky UK which most of the NZ hardware/software feels like it gets proved on as I understand now basically give out crippled (read: locked) versions of the MySKY-equiv decoders to everyone and simply unlock the PVR features/UI when people pony up for the STB fee.
In fact, looking at Sky UK's website now, that may not be the case anymore even, the current offer is even better and appears to be:
1x Sky+ Box (http://www.sky.com/products/kit/sky-plus-hd-box/) with built in wifi (I think I saw something about ~300-400GB) for free (based on the offer page http://www.sky.com/shop/) or 49 GBP (100 NZD) one-off upgrade fee to the 2TB Sky+ Box, both also 3D ready - they already have limited 3D broadcasts etc.
1x free HD & 3D Multiroom box (http://www.sky.com/products/kit/sky-hd-box/)
I think Sky would be able to earn more and justify extra charges etc if they had a looksie at what Uncle Murdoch was doing. (i.e. more attractive/simpler offering, less alienation)
(Side note, apparently Sky UK boxes are owned by the account holder, which results in the likes of.... http://www.skyprotect.com/ maybe not all bad here....)
You see...this is the kind of thing that really annoys me and coming from the UK and experiencing the FAR superior Sky service i have actual experience of this.
We in NZ are begging/pleading/crying out/desperate for one or two more HD channels here in NZ....
However, In the UK, Sky are offering over 50 HD channels, an 3D channel and an amazing EPG with on demand service.
Yes we are only a county of 4 million or so people and yes, Sky have a relative monopoly on pay per viewing - but it goes to show how effective competition is. In the UK there is Virgin Media offering HD cable TV with internet that downloads at 100mb, Sky are feeling threatened and actually thinking about improving their service.
The most significant thing that should affect us in NZ is that Vodafone expand their TV service, directly challenging Sky's stranglehold on the market.
More and more of us are getting cable in our areas, and if Vodafone ramp up their TV offering, Sky will naturally pick up their game and start listening to their customers. I actually think its only a matter of time until Sky aren't sitting so happy on the top of the pay per view market and instead offer its customers a quality HD and catch up service.
Remember the Sky promises.....new channels...new services....? Really? Come on Sky NZ either get bought out by Foxtel or let Mr Murdoch in the UK provide us with a quality service...
you do know that Vodafone's TV service is just rebranded Sky, right? other than one or two meaningless niche things, all the content is identical. The reason for that is that Vodafone are buying it from Sky.
Yep - i know Vodafone content is bought from Sky. My point was that Vodafone should look at the UK Virgin Media business model, where even though they buy most of the content from Sky UK, people are tempted by their bundle packs.....phone, broadband and a set top box. Vodafone NZ should go it alone and actually be a meaningful threat to Sky NZ. With Virgin Media in the UK, the EPG and stuff is Virgin Media specific, and their catch up service is far more advanced than even Sky's. Sky UK are threatened by these comparable set top boxes offered by Virgin and consequently Sky provide meaningful services and updated to their service in an attempt retain/attract new customers (like offering phone and broadband themselves). All Virgin services are provided through fibre which is unaffected by rain fade/inclement weather and fibre roll out is pretty advanced. Fibre is rolling out here at a rate of knots too....