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  Reply # 1867389 16-Sep-2017 19:18
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They could at least offer an option to nuke the ad's out of content on the PVR side of things automatically for a small fee. They obviously know when they were played out do have the timestamps for it, send those down to authorised boxes and they can just delete that part of the recording or skip it on playback.

 

Might not sit well with their customers tho.





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  Reply # 1867392 16-Sep-2017 19:57
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tdgeek:

 

 

 

I agree, as does Sky. The ads subsidise the Sky subscription. As you say, the money has to come from somewhere. As long as Sky isn't rorting, you nailed it. And they arent, as has often been proven here

 

 

 

 

When I was at boarding school, we pooled our money to get sky. It was relatively cheap, probably because they didn't realise we were a school, and would have liekly charged us a different rate. But it was about the cost was around the same price as hiring a VHS video each week, and included the movie channel and sports. But back then we didn't get any adverts apart from the normal sky adverts. That was one of the benefits of getting it  That was back when you could still get the UHF option, and only had a few channels. When looking at getting it a few years ago for a family member, they couldn't believe that it had adverts, and really wanted a service that didn't have that. Even having a premium service to get rid of ads, like Youtube has, is a way to upsell, but not really easy on a linear broadcast model.
I think on demand, and live just for live events, and over the internet is really the only long term future for sky, rather than a linear broadcast model. But they have some very high paid staff and consultants that should be able to come up with ideas, and it isn't the publics job to do this.


 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 1868194 18-Sep-2017 19:13
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tdgeek:

 

 

 

I agree, as does Sky. The ads subsidise the Sky subscription. As you say, the money has to come from somewhere. As long as Sky isn't rorting, you nailed it. And they arent, as has often been proven here

 

 

You keep coming back to Sky's profit margins. I think you may be missing the point a wee bit.

 

Sky may not be "rorting" in the classic sense of a dishonest scheme to take advantage of their users, but in my view their product is overpriced. Particularly the non-sport content. It is overpriced in the sense of costing far more than similar content from other providers (Amazon Prime, Netflix, Lightbox). The over-pricing is true in both dollar terms, and also in non-dollar terms through having viwer's eyeballs sold off to advertisers as well. Compared to alternatives, it is ceasing to be value for money.

 

As a consumer, I don't care that despite the content being overpriced Sky is making slender profit margins. I couldn't care less about their business model, margins or profit - only whether or not what they are offering is value for money. The fact that they have near-obsolescent kit, an old distribution model and are locked into overpriced contracts with Optus et al doesn't concern me. That is an issue for their shareholders and management.

 

Consumers should only care whether they are being offered a good value proposition. And, increasingly and especially for non-sport entertainment, steady and substantial loss of consumers seems to indicate that they don't.

 

To stem the steady bleed of subscribers they will have to improve the value proposition. There are multiple options for doing that (eg price, content range, equipment provided, viewer experience including ad interruptions etc). If they don't then, ultimately, they are out of business. How they do that while remaining viable isn't, frankly, a problem for their customers. Nor should it be.


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  Reply # 1868202 18-Sep-2017 19:33
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mattwnz:

 

tdgeek:

 

 

 

I agree, as does Sky. The ads subsidise the Sky subscription. As you say, the money has to come from somewhere. As long as Sky isn't rorting, you nailed it. And they arent, as has often been proven here

 

 

 

 

When I was at boarding school, we pooled our money to get sky. It was relatively cheap, probably because they didn't realise we were a school, and would have liekly charged us a different rate. But it was about the cost was around the same price as hiring a VHS video each week, and included the movie channel and sports. But back then we didn't get any adverts apart from the normal sky adverts. That was one of the benefits of getting it  That was back when you could still get the UHF option, and only had a few channels. When looking at getting it a few years ago for a family member, they couldn't believe that it had adverts, and really wanted a service that didn't have that. Even having a premium service to get rid of ads, like Youtube has, is a way to upsell, but not really easy on a linear broadcast model.
I think on demand, and live just for live events, and over the internet is really the only long term future for sky, rather than a linear broadcast model. But they have some very high paid staff and consultants that should be able to come up with ideas, and it isn't the publics job to do this.

 

I remember when I had Sky and Sky Sport 2 came in, another add-on, and they moved Nascar to SS2. I stopped paying. When the guy came to confiscate my unit for non payment, I ranted and paid. Kept box. Did that twice.

 

Sky has OD, and live. But yes they cud make all non live as OD and forget linear. That doesn't help costs, it just changes the menu. Internet only? I assume you mean that. Interest vs satellite isn't much of a cost saver, so with that, i'd prefer satellite.


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  Reply # 1868204 18-Sep-2017 19:49
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JimmyH:

 

tdgeek:

 

 

 

I agree, as does Sky. The ads subsidise the Sky subscription. As you say, the money has to come from somewhere. As long as Sky isn't rorting, you nailed it. And they arent, as has often been proven here

 

 

You keep coming back to Sky's profit margins. I think you may be missing the point a wee bit.

 

Sky may not be "rorting" in the classic sense of a dishonest scheme to take advantage of their users, but in my view their product is overpriced. Particularly the non-sport content. It is overpriced in the sense of costing far more than similar content from other providers (Amazon Prime, Netflix, Lightbox). The over-pricing is true in both dollar terms, and also in non-dollar terms through having viwer's eyeballs sold off to advertisers as well. Compared to alternatives, it is ceasing to be value for money.

 

As a consumer, I don't care that despite the content being overpriced Sky is making slender profit margins. I couldn't care less about their business model, margins or profit - only whether or not what they are offering is value for money. The fact that they have near-obsolescent kit, an old distribution model and are locked into overpriced contracts with Optus et al doesn't concern me. That is an issue for their shareholders and management.

 

Consumers should only care whether they are being offered a good value proposition. And, increasingly and especially for non-sport entertainment, steady and substantial loss of consumers seems to indicate that they don't.

 

To stem the steady bleed of subscribers they will have to improve the value proposition. There are multiple options for doing that (eg price, content range, equipment provided, viewer experience including ad interruptions etc). If they don't then, ultimately, they are out of business. How they do that while remaining viable isn't, frankly, a problem for their customers. Nor should it be.

 

 

When you can point to a product being offered in NZ, with the same coverage, variety of content, ease of use, anywhere near that price, then you might have a point. 

 

As has been said about 40 times this thread, if you don't find value in the offering, move to another offering. NF, LB, other services are NOT equivilent service offerings, so of course they are cheaper. If those providers have what you want, knock yourself out.

 

700,000 subscribers find value in what they are offered. Would they all like it cheaper? Sure, probably. Is that likely, nope. 

 

I am not aware of another subscription available in NZ that would offer me the content food TV, or the living channel offers in the same curated method either.

 

 


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  Reply # 1868213 18-Sep-2017 19:53
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JimmyH:

 

tdgeek:

 

 

 

I agree, as does Sky. The ads subsidise the Sky subscription. As you say, the money has to come from somewhere. As long as Sky isn't rorting, you nailed it. And they arent, as has often been proven here

 

 

You keep coming back to Sky's profit margins. I think you may be missing the point a wee bit.

 

Sky may not be "rorting" in the classic sense of a dishonest scheme to take advantage of their users, but in my view their product is overpriced. Particularly the non-sport content. It is overpriced in the sense of costing far more than similar content from other providers (Amazon Prime, Netflix, Lightbox). The over-pricing is true in both dollar terms, and also in non-dollar terms through having viwer's eyeballs sold off to advertisers as well. Compared to alternatives, it is ceasing to be value for money.

 

As a consumer, I don't care that despite the content being overpriced Sky is making slender profit margins. I couldn't care less about their business model, margins or profit - only whether or not what they are offering is value for money. The fact that they have near-obsolescent kit, an old distribution model and are locked into overpriced contracts with Optus et al doesn't concern me. That is an issue for their shareholders and management.

 

Consumers should only care whether they are being offered a good value proposition. And, increasingly and especially for non-sport entertainment, steady and substantial loss of consumers seems to indicate that they don't.

 

To stem the steady bleed of subscribers they will have to improve the value proposition. There are multiple options for doing that (eg price, content range, equipment provided, viewer experience including ad interruptions etc). If they don't then, ultimately, they are out of business. How they do that while remaining viable isn't, frankly, a problem for their customers. Nor should it be.

 

 

I do but I dont think Im missing the point. Ill go over some of yours. :-)

 

The product isn't over priced. Thats a fact. Now, as you say, you may feel it doesnt reach the value at the price it is, for you, thats fair. However you cannot compare Netflix, Amazon and Lightbox. If you LOVED Sky and movies, you wouldn't get Sky, you would get NF. If you loved TV series there is also no reason to subscribe to Sky, you'd get LB. 

 

If you loved sport, you get Sky.

 

Its common knowledge that they use Basic to subsidise sport, that should be stopped. Make Basic a Netflix, Lightbox type of product at similar cost. Sport then costs what it really costs. Basic OD at $20 max would be good value. Sport $80

 

The kit isn't near obsolete. Its a streaming box. And HDD recorder. Easy remote. Its fine.

 

The distribution model isnt dated, not once they separate Basic and Sport. If they got rid of Optus, all is then OD only, a 2017 model. Not much to change there.

 

As many state many times, Sky isn't a Netflix etc competitor as I showed above, but many people think it is, so it needs a $15 price tag. It can, not for sport though.

 

 

 

As to Sky's future, I agree, its their problem. But a cheaper price wont fix that as they make less than $12 per month per subscriber. So thats out. At Basic OD only $20 or maybe $15, thats good value. Sport, $80 is the price take it or leave it, thats what it costs. IMO thats the only option.

 

They are hanging on, bleeding subscribers, its taken this long for that to grow much, it was less than 5%. Maybe they have to ride out major sport contracts, maybe they have to ride out Optus. Thats my guess as they are locked in till about 2019, so tough on them. Then, you may see satellite or OD only with a new UI all based on the MySky. They make go sports only. They may voluntarily wind up, leaving sports for others to buy.


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  Reply # 1868229 18-Sep-2017 20:32
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JimmyH:

 

tdgeek:

 

 

 

I agree, as does Sky. The ads subsidise the Sky subscription. As you say, the money has to come from somewhere. As long as Sky isn't rorting, you nailed it. And they arent, as has often been proven here

 

 

You keep coming back to Sky's profit margins. I think you may be missing the point a wee bit.

 

Sky may not be "rorting" in the classic sense of a dishonest scheme to take advantage of their users, but in my view their product is overpriced. Particularly the non-sport content. It is overpriced in the sense of costing far more than similar content from other providers (Amazon Prime, Netflix, Lightbox). The over-pricing is true in both dollar terms, and also in non-dollar terms through having viwer's eyeballs sold off to advertisers as well. Compared to alternatives, it is ceasing to be value for money.

 

As a consumer, I don't care that despite the content being overpriced Sky is making slender profit margins. I couldn't care less about their business model, margins or profit - only whether or not what they are offering is value for money. The fact that they have near-obsolescent kit, an old distribution model and are locked into overpriced contracts with Optus et al doesn't concern me. That is an issue for their shareholders and management.

 

Consumers should only care whether they are being offered a good value proposition. And, increasingly and especially for non-sport entertainment, steady and substantial loss of consumers seems to indicate that they don't.

 

To stem the steady bleed of subscribers they will have to improve the value proposition. There are multiple options for doing that (eg price, content range, equipment provided, viewer experience including ad interruptions etc). If they don't then, ultimately, they are out of business. How they do that while remaining viable isn't, frankly, a problem for their customers. Nor should it be.

 

 

Sigh.  I wish people wouldnt put value proposition and Lightbox in the same discussion.  If you cant get paying customers its not a value proposition.  If you have to give it away for free its not a value proposition.  At the moment every Spark broadband subscriber is subsidising those that use Lightbox.  If Lightbox was a true value proposition then why dont Spark drop every broadband package by $13/mth (lord knows that'd drop its churn and boost its market share) and let those that see value in Lightbox subscribe to it.  Stand on its own two feet.  Or somehow its okay for Spark broadband subscribers to subsidise its entertainment offering but not okay for Sky basic subscribers to subsidise sport viewers.  

 

Netflix is a value proposition - albeit the international subscribers are being subsidised by the US subscribers.  Amazon Prime - value proposition?  Questionable.  If you have to extend your 6 month opening offer (even though your headline price is substantially lower than your competitors) then you have to wonder about the longevity of the product, but hey the core Amazon business is subsidising the entertainment arm anyhow.  

 

Goodness, so much subsidisation within every offering out there.  Who knew?!


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  Reply # 1868240 18-Sep-2017 21:06
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To come back to the topic "Sky blames piracy for lost customers".  It's a typical chicken and egg scenario; did piracy take customers away or did customers leave and *some* turn to piracy?  The difference is subtle but still there.

 

I suggest that Sky have lost customers because of a combination of high prices, diminishing content on basic channels (with ads) and lack of innovation [my reasons] - whether these are perceived by the consumer or real is irrelevant to the end user.  Those customers have presumably gone to other sources for their various needs; including Netflix, Lightbox, Amazon and "piracy".  Streaming from overseas content providers (without bypassing the paywall) such as the BBC is still a grey area, although I suspect this will be lumped in with the "piracy" argument (let's not discuss this here again).

 

 





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  Reply # 1868312 19-Sep-2017 06:40
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StarBlazer:

 

To come back to the topic "Sky blames piracy for lost customers".  It's a typical chicken and egg scenario; did piracy take customers away or did customers leave and *some* turn to piracy?  The difference is subtle but still there.

 

I suggest that Sky have lost customers because of a combination of high prices, diminishing content on basic channels (with ads) and lack of innovation [my reasons] - whether these are perceived by the consumer or real is irrelevant to the end user.  Those customers have presumably gone to other sources for their various needs; including Netflix, Lightbox, Amazon and "piracy".  Streaming from overseas content providers (without bypassing the paywall) such as the BBC is still a grey area, although I suspect this will be lumped in with the "piracy" argument (let's not discuss this here again).

 

 

 

 

I doubt piracy makes much difference, but its trendy to offer as a cause. The who ditch Sky to Netflix etc haven't gone to other sources for their various needs. They have gone to other sources to stop paying $100 and now pay $13. Its ONLY about the money. They will forego Sky content that they and their family like and will put up with a TV series only service, or a service that offers many older TV series and movies.

 

Innovation? I look at my NF or LB. I have a grid of thumbnails I need to scroll through. Takes a while. Sky, I can see all the linear channels, I have many on series link, easy. Menu is easy. Sky has OnDemand, easy. If they go fully ON and drop linear, that wont be hard, I prefer their menu + a grid + Sky Remote.

 

But they should make Basic $20, then you can compare to the other cheap services. 


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  Reply # 1868317 19-Sep-2017 07:04
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tdgeek:

 

Innovation? I look at my NF or LB. I have a grid of thumbnails I need to scroll through. Takes a while. Sky, I can see all the linear channels, I have many on series link, easy. Menu is easy. Sky has OnDemand, easy. If they go fully ON and drop linear, that wont be hard, I prefer their menu + a grid + Sky Remote.

 

But they should make Basic $20, then you can compare to the other cheap services. 

 

 

Agreed. There has to be some value in recouping the customers they've already lost and this seems to be a good way to get people back on board. 

 

There is so little on Basic anyway that this is a fair price, all things considered. 


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  Reply # 1868322 19-Sep-2017 07:17
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GV27:

 

tdgeek:

 

Innovation? I look at my NF or LB. I have a grid of thumbnails I need to scroll through. Takes a while. Sky, I can see all the linear channels, I have many on series link, easy. Menu is easy. Sky has OnDemand, easy. If they go fully ON and drop linear, that wont be hard, I prefer their menu + a grid + Sky Remote.

 

But they should make Basic $20, then you can compare to the other cheap services. 

 

 

Agreed. There has to be some value in recouping the customers they've already lost and this seems to be a good way to get people back on board. 

 

There is so little on Basic anyway that this is a fair price, all things considered. 

 

 

Basic is horses for courses. Its FTA, handy, no need to shift devices or HDMI. A lot of niche channels, kids, etc. A good party pack of content. Not a lot of any one thing, but a bit of everything. Offer Basic OD as well  


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  Reply # 1868331 19-Sep-2017 07:40
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tdgeek:

 

StarBlazer:

 

To come back to the topic "Sky blames piracy for lost customers".  It's a typical chicken and egg scenario; did piracy take customers away or did customers leave and *some* turn to piracy?  The difference is subtle but still there.

 

I suggest that Sky have lost customers because of a combination of high prices, diminishing content on basic channels (with ads) and lack of innovation [my reasons] - whether these are perceived by the consumer or real is irrelevant to the end user.  Those customers have presumably gone to other sources for their various needs; including Netflix, Lightbox, Amazon and "piracy".  Streaming from overseas content providers (without bypassing the paywall) such as the BBC is still a grey area, although I suspect this will be lumped in with the "piracy" argument (let's not discuss this here again).

 

 

 

 

I doubt piracy makes much difference, but its trendy to offer as a cause. The who ditch Sky to Netflix etc haven't gone to other sources for their various needs. They have gone to other sources to stop paying $100 and now pay $13. Its ONLY about the money. They will forego Sky content that they and their family like and will put up with a TV series only service, or a service that offers many older TV series and movies.

 

Innovation? I look at my NF or LB. I have a grid of thumbnails I need to scroll through. Takes a while. Sky, I can see all the linear channels, I have many on series link, easy. Menu is easy. Sky has OnDemand, easy. If they go fully ON and drop linear, that wont be hard, I prefer their menu + a grid + Sky Remote.

 

But they should make Basic $20, then you can compare to the other cheap services. 

 

 

A report from the Video Advertising Bureau in the US  (of course it has vested interests) still shows that its all about the money.

 

"The minority of homes that are broadband-only (only 4% of all TV households) generally are because of financial constraints, not content preference. In fact, 80% of cord cutters/nevers have said they would opt for an MVPD subscription if cost weren’t a factor. Furthermore, when financial situations change, as is often the case with millennials who make up a large portion of cord-nevers, they generally end up becoming cable subscribers as their age and income mature."  Source:  RapidTVNews

 

 

 

And you wont see Basic reduce to $20 until Neon and FanPass merge in the "medium term".  Critical to this will be conclusion of the SANZAR rights to set the cost base for sport - the sooner it happens the better for everyone.  Then Neon and Fanpass merge - and then the paytv packages could be reset.  I'm guessing the Basic package will mirror Neon, you'll be able to add news, docos etc in a mid and top tier offering probably something like Foxtel and Sky UK.  Until then nothing is likely to happen IMHO.


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  Reply # 1868830 19-Sep-2017 20:06
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tdgeek:

 

 

 

I doubt piracy makes much difference, but its trendy to offer as a cause. The who ditch Sky to Netflix etc haven't gone to other sources for their various needs. They have gone to other sources to stop paying $100 and now pay $13. Its ONLY about the money.

 

 

I will make two points, and then I suspect I'm out of this discussion unless someone raises something novel as I have said about all I have to say on the subject.

 

1.  It isn't "just about the money", although money is clearly a big driver. All other things being equal, shows on NF/LB are more watchable than the comparable shows on Sky. Why? Because they don't interrupt the programme every seven minutes to shout at me to buy something, or replay the same promo over and over for another Sky show. Which, for me, ruins the viewing experience.

 

2. I stand by my view that Sky's kit is verging on obsolescence. It doesn't compare favorably to newer streaming boxes on the market (eg the new Apple TV, the Nvidia Shield or the Roku Premiere+), or to the boxes that similar services are rolling out overseas (eg the Sky Q in the UK). It:

 

  • has a tiny hard drive (500GB in the days of HD content is ludicrous), and doesn't support expandable storage
  • only supports up to 1080p50 (although Sky currently only transmits up to 1080i50), which degrades the experience if the material in question is natively 60fps from the US - the conversion materially degrades video quality
  • doesn't support HDR
  • doesn't support 4K when those streams become available
  • has limited tuner capability (the Sky Q lets you record six shows while watching a seventh)
  • lacks the multi-room extendability of the Sky Q

So it doesn't seem terribly cutting edge or future proof to me. They are just finishing a roll out of kit of a capability that was standard in other jurisdictions 5 years ago, and which other providers like Sky UK are beginning to phase out.


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  Reply # 1868850 19-Sep-2017 20:34
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JimmyH:

 

tdgeek:

 

 

 

I doubt piracy makes much difference, but its trendy to offer as a cause. The who ditch Sky to Netflix etc haven't gone to other sources for their various needs. They have gone to other sources to stop paying $100 and now pay $13. Its ONLY about the money.

 

 

I will make two points, and then I suspect I'm out of this discussion unless someone raises something novel as I have said about all I have to say on the subject.

 

1.  It isn't "just about the money", although money is clearly a big driver. All other things being equal, shows on NF/LB are more watchable than the comparable shows on Sky. Why? Because they don't interrupt the programme every seven minutes to shout at me to buy something, or replay the same promo over and over for another Sky show. Which, for me, ruins the viewing experience.

 

2. I stand by my view that Sky's kit is verging on obsolescence. It doesn't compare favorably to newer streaming boxes on the market (eg the new Apple TV, the Nvidia Shield or the Roku Premiere+), or to the boxes that similar services are rolling out overseas (eg the Sky Q in the UK). It:

 

  • has a tiny hard drive (500GB in the days of HD content is ludicrous), and doesn't support expandable storage
  • only supports up to 1080p50 (although Sky currently only transmits up to 1080i50), which degrades the experience if the material in question is natively 60fps from the US - the conversion materially degrades video quality
  • doesn't support HDR
  • doesn't support 4K when those streams become available
  • has limited tuner capability (the Sky Q lets you record six shows while watching a seventh)
  • lacks the multi-room extendability of the Sky Q

So it doesn't seem terribly cutting edge or future proof to me. They are just finishing a roll out of kit of a capability that was standard in other jurisdictions 5 years ago, and which other providers like Sky UK are beginning to phase out.

 

 

I get the ads, but if I said lets ban all ads, then the world will end. We just want Sky ads to end. FTA ads are ok. OD which is todays tech, you are stuck with ads you cant FFW FTA OD. Thats what I read. 

 

Your 6 points for the device include two for recording. If Sky gets with the times, and goes OD, no need to record. Or to tune. My Apple TV4 has only 64GB and no tuners.  But OK, I accept the rest. If Sky had to go OD, that becomes irrelevant as we will use our own STB

 

I couldn't imagine giving up some of the stuff I like on Sky to watch something different on Netflix just to avoid ads. 


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  Reply # 1870051 21-Sep-2017 10:33
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tdgeek: The ads subsidise the Sky subscription. As you say, the money has to come from somewhere. As long as Sky isn't rorting, you nailed it. And they arent, as has often been proven here. 

 

I'm struggling a little with this concept. How does Sky spending subscription money to make promotional adverts about themselves, and upcoming programming, subsidise the subscription viewers pay? Are the programming adverts made by the content sellers who in turn pay Sky to show them?


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