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BT Sport TV Content to Remain FREE for Broadband ISP Customers

Wednesday, April 30th, 2014 (11:26 am) - Score 2,352

BT’s consumer ISP division has confirmed that their new and re-contracting broadband subscribers will continue to benefit from free access to BTSport TV content for a second season and the operator also revealed that around 5 million UK homes now view the service (3 million come direct from BT and the rest via wholesale partners).

The service officially launched last August 2013 (here) and some have since speculated over whether or not it would continue to remain free past its first year of operation. Indeed commercial TV sporting rights can cost hundreds of millions per year to air and offering that for free is a risky business. But those concerns have now been put to rest, at least for another year.

At the same time BT also confirmed today that its set-top-box based IPTV service (BT TV) has finally passed the 1 million customers milestone, with the majority of those homes taking BT Sport.

John Petter, BT’s Consumer CEO, said:

Fans have been the winners with BT Sport. Millions of homes have enjoyed the very best sporting action for free. We said we would shake up the market and we have done just that. The great news for fans is that BT Sport will remain free with BT Broadband for another season, during which we will broadcast live action from the new European rugby tournaments. There has never been a better time to switch to BT Broadband so I would encourage sports fans to sign up.”

It’s worth pointing out that non-BT Broadband customers can also watch the channels if they have a Sky satellite box. The service is currently £12 a month in Standard Definition and £15 a month for HD, while Virgin Media customers can access the channels for the same price or as part of their package if they take Virgin’s XL bundle.

Customers who want BT Broadband will generally also need to take BT’s line rental service too, which costs £15.99 a month or £141 when paid annually (equivalent to £11.75 a month). Meanwhile the entry-level broadband service costs from £6.50 per month (special offer for first 12 months then £13 thereafter), although that only gives you a 10GB usage allowance and for a few pounds more you’d be better off with their “Truly Unlimited” bundles.

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Mark Jackson
By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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14 Responses
  1. Avatar Matthew Williams

    Good news in a way it does make sense for BT to do this as it draws people away from taking Sky Broadband and Phone. Wonder how long it will remain free for BT Broadband customers though.

    • Avatar Raindrops

      Could not care less if it were free or not. Have hardly ever bothered to use my free access to it to sit in front of the computer to watch it.

      The content in my opinion is quite poor unless you are a football fan. The rest of the sport is either nothing of significance or importance to most people. Unless you count less than half the Premier ship football matches as important, enjoy watching dross, like idiots talking about sport rather than show it for half the day or classify the newly acquired Moto GP as a premier motor racing event they have nothing to offer.

      The channel is more like TALK SHOW TV THAN ANYTHING

      As i type this today on BT Sport 1 there is 2.30pm till 4.30pm The Football show, which normally involves a panel, half of the time includes people which have never been involved in football talking about the sport for an hour and a half.

      This is followed at 4.30pm till 6.30pm by MLS (football or as they called it soccer) out in America which has no importance to 90% of us here. Apparently there is spose to be 2 matches in that 2 hour time frame… Must be worse and only be highlights as a single football match is 1.5hours long or do the yanks do that differently also? So errrrrr.

      6.30pm premier league world talk show about the premiership
      7.00pm sports hub a sports news round up show (IE more talk)
      7.30pm Some conference league football match (who cares must be a small number again the amount of talk equates out to longer than the actual match)
      10pm Lifes a pitch…. another football talk show (Getting late talky talky wheres my sport YAWN)
      11pm Premier league round up AGAIN (oh Christ more talk)
      12am-1.30am If you are not in a coma by then another talk show this time a load of waffle about rugby.

      Ironically ESPN which is part of their “sports” channels actually has more “event” sport at the moment. Even if you hate American stuff like the regular Baseball and Basketball dross that even has Indy Car racing on currently which is about as close to a nice change and a actual “event” sport that BT get.

      On the other hand if you buy a cheap £50 freesat dish and point it at the right satellite in Europe you can currently have Eurosport 1 and 2 for free which today between now and midnight you have a choice over the 2 channels of…..
      Snooker, Cycling, Show jumping, ATP Tennis and if you stay up late Formula Renault and Formula 3 motor racing on. Its not spaced out with some idiots in-between flapping their lips for over an hour pretending to be experts either.

    • Avatar DTMark

      Does it not even have horse riding with Clare Balding?

      😉

    • Avatar Raindrops

      I guess that woman complete with her half a rain forest destruction of paper notes spewed all over a desk and talking about sport she has never had any involvement in may be on BT Sport 2 at some point today.

      I can not be bothered to press the guide button on the remote and even look. The beeb ditching her and Jake humphrey was 2 of the best decisions they made with regards to sport in the past year or so. One that carries his ipad around like a small puppy dog and the other collecting paper like some kind of hoarder. While both thinking they are experts in every sport in the universe.

    • Avatar No clue

      “..carries his ipad around like a small puppy dog and the other collecting paper like some kind of hoarder. ”

      Oh that is harsh but so funny it is true.

  2. Well they can afford to give it away for free due to the billion pounds or so of BDUK money that are getting for nothing!

    • Avatar Raindrops

      Yeah funny isn’t it, BT Sport just like freeview which also had government funding half of it turns out to be utter dross, rather than filling the available bandwidth/airwaves with decent content.

      People moan about stuff on Sky and/or Virgin, i can only assume they want to watch endless hours of tools talking about sport for half the day or tune in to half the freeview channels which show you what was on 1 hour ago followed by a quick flick of the channel to see what was also on the prior day also.

      What a wonderful TV experience BT and the government have given us. Well worth the £12 a month if you are not a BT customer to get their Sports… Errr chat channels and the license fee to watch the same content for 2 days straight…… Sarcasm off!

  3. Avatar BT Investor

    People may complain about content, but most sports fans love the BT offering. They love getting free Premiership matches every week in addition to enjoying super-fast infinity broadband.

    • Avatar JNeuhoff

      That’s fine. However, give back to the taxpayer the £1Billion wasted sofar on BT via BDUK schemes!

    • Avatar BT Investor

      That money is not wasted. It’s a worthwhile investment in the future of our country.

    • Avatar No clue

      “People may complain about content, but most sports fans love the BT offering. They love getting free Premiership matches every week in addition to enjoying super-fast infinity broadband.”

      If people want a truly free sports offering which for most of the day as raindrops illustrated nicely is just talking about sport rather than actually having any sport on they can turn on the radio and listen to Talk Sport.

      Not sure even where or why you bring Infinity in to the debate seeing as BT Sport is free with BT ADSL packages also.

      Stuff which is free is normally free for a reason and that reason is normally because its crap, BT sport fits that mantra. It just indirectly cost the tax payer, thats no shock either though most of what the tax payer gets in return nowadays in anything is crap.

  4. Avatar JNeuhoff

    “Not sure even where or why you bring Infinity in to the debate seeing as BT Sport is free with BT ADSL packages also.”

    Some people have been so brain-washed by BT that they eventually think of Infinity as being a fibre-broadband, they don’t think of it as copper-VDSL (which often is not superfast either).

  5. Avatar Sledgehammer

    I wonder when/if BT will get round to charging for this service?

    • Avatar George

      They do they “try” to charge £12 for BTSport1&2 and ESPN if you are not a BT customer, that is more per channel than anything from Sky or Virgin.

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