Vodafone and Sky are ready to team up to build the mobile operator’s upcoming broadband and TV service by bundling Sky’s Now TV offering in as part of the package.
It’s understood that Vodafone will use Now TV boxes to deliver its TV offering into homes using the bundled broadband and TV service that it hopes to roll out by as soon as the spring, according to The Telegraph.
There is already an established link between the two companies that allows Vodafone to offer Sky Sports channels to its 4G customers and it has already added Now TV as an option that includes Sky Movies and Sky Atlantic.
“Our strategy with Now TV is to be as broadly distributed as possible and that means talking to lots of people,” said a spokesman for Sky.
Another part of the agreement reportedly involves co-marketing Sky and Vodafone services and it’s thought that this would form the crux of a Sky-branded mobile phone network. Sky also gets access to Vodafone’s huge subscriber base that reportedly numbers some 20 million customers.
Rumours of a partnership between Sky and Vodafone is certainly nothing new after reports in January stated that a collaboration between the two would involve bundling a high-speed broadband service with Sky’s own bundles, much like the suggestion here.
“They’re both high end, both focused on premium brand and superior performance,” said Guy Peddy, an analyst at Macquarie.
The talks progressed after BT chose to use EE as its mobile virtual network operator instead of Vodafone as it considers EE’s 4G network to be far better than Vodafone’s offering.
Even more worrying than this is BT’s intention to use its fixed-line network to launch a mobile phone offers that aims to lure subscribers with costs that significantly undercut the current market leaders.
BT is also making incursions on Sky’s stranglehold over the Premier League TV rights after it paid over £700 million for a handful of packages and the next auction early next year will be crucial in that regard.
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