richardgnz: I feel very let down with the amount of HD content on Sky Sports 1 and 2. We are made to pay a premium for the HD ticket so all content if possible should be in HD. This does not happen.
Every week Sky show a lot of football games from the english premiership. This is fantastic, but - only about 50% are in HD. Every game is filmed in HD so it is just Sky being tight and not wanting to pay for it. Should they be allowed to do this?
Secondly ESPN - What a joke. The EUFA Champions League is only shown on this channel. This in my opinion is the greatest competion in the world - it beats any world cup and I have to watch it on ESPN. I might as well stream it of a dodgy site on the internet. The clarity is horrible. Its not even SD??? ESPN do offer an HD channel! Why are we made to put up what looks like a low bandwidth internet feed.
I seem to recall that ESPN International owns the rights to Champions League and Europa league for this part of the world. Unless Sky adds ESPNHD to its lineup then there is little chance of a change - and even then you should check Foxtel's ESPNHD programming guide to see if they choose to play those games on that channel. Recall that pre-HD Champions League still only appeared on ESPN - it goes back to the rights ownership rather than Sky. But it is encumbent on them to decide on ESPN vs ESPNHD. I imagine its a matter of time (and linking to the US). Foxtel had to quadruple capacity on its US-AUS feed and ESPNHD was a big driver of this.
Re: English premiership. I suggest that the quality of the live broadcast will come down to capacity and viewership. If Golf in HD is on at the same time as two EPL games then you'll see golf, 1 EPL in HD and 1 EPL in SD. Beyond that it would likely be a programmers call as to where the replays appear SS1/SS2/SS3. If a replay appears on SS1 or SS2 it will be in HD. Case in point at the weekend with the rugby league - both games live on SS3 in SD but replays on SS2 (Sun afternoon and Mon afternoon).
At the end of the day its about viewership. Any content that Sky has the HD rights for and the scheduling works for will be played in HD.