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UPDATE BT Sport TV Content to Go FREE For All During October 2013

Friday, October 4th, 2013 (12:32 pm) - Score 2,616
bt sport tv and broadband

In an effort to pull in more subscribers BT’s consumer division has today announced that its new BTSport TV service, which is usually offered for free alongside their various home broadband and phone packages, will become available to EVERYONE with Freeview, BT TV, Sky TV (Sky Broadband) or Virgin Media TV for several weeks this month.

In short, viewers will be able to watch BTSport’s magazine and live sport programming on Freeview channel 57 (note: only ‘BTSport 1’) from the weeks commencing October 7th and 14th (Monday – Friday from 7pm each evening). Similarly customers on Sky TV and Virgin Media will get access between October 25th to 28th (Friday 6pm – Monday 6am).

In addition, BT will finish its Open October event by making BT Sport 1, BT Sport 2 and ESPN open during the weekend of the 26th – 27th October. The free coverage period means that many people will be able to watch matches like the FIFA World Cup 2014 Qualifier between Spain and Belarus, the UEFA U21 Qualifier between England and Lithuania and Bundesliga action between 1899 Hoffenheim and Bayer Leverkusen among other things.

Simon Green, Head of BTSport, said:

We want to give even more viewers the chance to see the new programmes and live sporting action happening on BT Sport during October. Making the channels open to all allows us to show how we are offering something for everyone, from sports entertainment shows through to exclusive live sporting action.”

Normally BTSport is free alongside BT Broadband or when bundled alongside BT’s own Pay TV service (though the HD channels usually cost an extra £3 per month), although Sky TV customers have to pay £15 per month for the HD service or £12 for standard definition.

Meanwhile Virgin Media’s 3 million or so XL TV subscribers usually get access to the content as part of their existing package, though their other customers have to pay a similar price to Sky TV’s users.

UPDATE 1:22pm

In related news BT’s new deal with Curzon Home Cinema means that BT TV subscribers will be able to watch “the very best in Independent and World cinema” via their TV’s on the same day as the cinema release. Now if only they could do that for the mainstream cinema releases.

Leave a Comment
10 Responses
  1. Avatar DTMark

    Does anyone have any statistics on subscribers and audience figures?

    The (rather well done) ads for this have blokey coming across as “your mate”.

    Except that the message isn’t really something “a mate” would say..

    “For the first time all the stuff for which you used to just pay one subscription to Sky or Virgin to get the complete set now needs you to pay more than you used to because we’ve got our hands on some of the events”.

    • I think we’ll have to wait until the next batch of results to answer that (due November-ish).

    • Avatar DTMark

      Were it not for the circumstances of the State Aid programme, I’d be applauding BT for entering a market which has been sewn up for so long and offering greater choice.

      Is BT TV a credible alternative to Virgin Media or Sky now?

      As it makes me wonder whether, if not, given that people don’t want to have to have two sets of services at the same time, it might have been necessary for BT to “go the whole hog” to make the TV platform work in terms of subscribers, especially when coverage is limited compared with Sky.

  2. Avatar Phil

    Our line rental increasing in January 2014 leads to BT Free Sports, crafty of BT do this way.

  3. Avatar JNeuhoff

    How much nicer would it be if BT actually started focusing on providing proper broadband services and telecom services first instead of wasting so much energy and money on sports adventures or Sainsbury vouchers.

    • Avatar FibreFred

      These are services which compliment each other which is why they are doing it , to be able to bundle just like virgin and sky do, you need to change to stay in business

    • Avatar Ignitionnet

      The more services you get punters to sign up to the lower the churn, hence Virgin Media acquiring Virgin Mobile and the obsession on the part of VM and Sky to get people onto triple play.

      You’d hardly call the all FTTP Verizon FiOS service poor yet triple play is a priority of theirs too, big discounts over taking a single or dual play service.

      http://www.verizon.com/home/bundles/fios/

    • Avatar Ignitionnet

      Just as an addendum the BT Sport stuff didn’t come out of the same budget as Openreach’s network builds. That budget was decided on well in advance of BT Sport coming into existence.

    • Avatar GNewton

      “Just as an addendum the BT Sport stuff didn’t come out of the same budget as Openreach’s network builds. That budget was decided on well in advance of BT Sport coming into existence.”

      You actually really believe this? 🙂

      Well, there are people who are also naive enough to believe that BT offers widespread fibre-broadband, thanks to ASA 🙂

  4. Avatar sheffieldowl

    No doubt trying to soften the blow of increasing the price of its products from January.
    The title is quite misleading as it makes it sound as though we can all watch for free all of October.
    In reality it means you have limited free access to quite a lot of poor content.

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