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Available to Buy – Sky UK’s New Sky Q TV Service and Broadband Router

Tuesday, February 9th, 2016 (9:49 am) - Score 4,229

As expected Sky has today announced that consumers can finally buy their new Sky Q TV service. On top of that all existing Sky Broadband customers or those who buy broadband with Sky Q have been told that they will also receive the new Sky Q Hub (router), which also turns other Sky Q boxes into WiFi signal boosters.

According to today’s announcement, Sky Q installations will be phased with Sky Broadband customers receiving the product first, before “very soon opening up to those with other broadband providers“. However some features, such as the Sky Q Hub’s WiFi boosting (see below) via other Sky Q devices, may not work when using a non-Sky ISP.

Sky’s Statement on the Sky Q Hub

All customers who already have Sky Broadband or who purchase Sky Broadband when buying Sky Q will also receive the brand new Sky Q Hub that turns Sky Q boxes into Wi-Fi hotspots, giving a supercharged Sky Broadband experience with the strongest and best coverage throughout the home. Sky Q installations will be phased with Sky Broadband customers receiving the product first, before very soon opening up to those with other broadband providers.

Sky’s wording isn’t clear and could be read in one of two ways. However our understanding is that the Sky Q Hub will be included for new/existing Sky Broadband customers (there’s no mention of a charge), albeit only when you take it with Sky Q. Meanwhile those with Sky Broadband, but who don’t wish to take Sky Q, will most likely be charged for the new Hub. We are checking and will report back shortly.

Otherwise Sky Q represents a new premium TV focused line of services and products, which among other things will bring in new 4K (Ultra HD TV) supporting kit, a better broadband router (Sky Q Hub) and the ability to wireless stream / share content around the home to watch on other TVs.

Sky Q Family of Products

· Sky Q Silver and Sky Q – Two new super-slim, powerful boxes for the main TV set, featuring up to 12 tuners and up to 2TB of storage.

· Sky Q Mini – A new plug and play box giving wireless access to Sky Q in other rooms in the home without running cables from the dish.

· Sky Q Hub – The all new Hub / router has built in Powerline networking technology, so it can use in-home electrical wiring as well as Wi-Fi to communicate with Sky Q boxes, automatically giving the best connection available. The Sky Q Hub also turns Sky Q boxes into Wi-Fi hotspots which means Sky Broadband customers get a stronger signal and better coverage throughout the home

· Sky Q App – A brand new app for your tablets that lets you enjoy all of the Sky Q experience at home, and take recordings with you and watch live and on demand content on the go

The set-up costs for Sky Q start at just £99 when taken with another service (e.g. Broadband and/or Sky Sports and/or Sky Movies) or from £249 without and the typical monthly cost for existing Sky+ customers will be around £12 extra compared with their current Sky+ package. For new customers joining Sky, the ongoing monthly cost for Sky Q will start from £42 (see last month’s news for more detail).

However our focus is naturally on that new Sky Q Hub, which represents a significant step-up from the somewhat outdated and low spec Sky Hub (SR101/102) routers that existing subscribers have had to endure and some are still stuck on even older kit. By comparison the new router adds 5GHz WiFi, a couple of 1000Mbps LAN/Ethernet ports, limited Powerline AV1.1 support (only designed to work with Sky Q kit) and the latest 802.11ac wireless standard.

Sky Q Hub Specs

Physical connections
• 2x 10/100/1000 Mb/s Ethernet RJ45 port
• 1x DSL port
• Mains (Mains input 230V)

Connectivity
• Supports and automatically detects ADSL2+ and is backward compatible with ADSL
• Supports and automatically detects VDSL2 and be backward compatible with VDSL to support Sky Fibre
• Works dual band on 2.4GHz and 5GHz concurrently
– 2.4GHz 801.11n is 2×2 MIMO – Back compatible with 802.11 b/g
– 5GHz 801.11ac is 3×3 MIMO – Back compatible with 802.11n
• Supports Powerline AV1.1 – only compatible with other Sky devices
• IPv6 support

Security
• Support WPA/WPA2 with WPA-PSK/AES and TKIP security
• Support WPA2/AES

Power consumption / Power saving features
• “Network Standby” mode which uses less than 12W of power within twenty minutes of no use

The challenge for Sky will now be in ensuring that their customers are willing to pay for all this extra stuff, which could be a tough sell given that many consumers already perceive their TV packages to be quite expensive. Price is also one of the key reasons why consumers have been adopting services like Netflix and Sky itself has even had to launch a broadband-based equivalent called NOW TV, which is incidentally quite good.

The first Sky Q customers will be installed at the end of this month and will get a “full professional installation” as part of the set-up cost. You’ll also be able to purchase the new service through one of Sky’s 250 retail outlets up and down the UK from Friday 12th February.

Leave a Comment
7 Responses
  1. Avatar bdo21 says:

    Sky Q is discounted but not free if you have Sky Broadband. The T&Cs are on the Sky website – relevant text copied below

    One off cost:

    Sky Q: £249 Sky Q smart features fee for recording and related features applies. For new Sky TV customers and existing Sky TV customers without HD or Multiscreen, it’s discounted to £99 if you add Sky Movies or Sky Sports or if you add or already have Sky Broadband at their standard prices. (Existing Sky TV customers with HD or Multiscreen can call 0808-160-1374 FREE to get this Sky Q bundle.) Free set up for new Sky TV customers, otherwise £50.

    Sky Q Silver: £299 Sky Q Silver smart features fee for recording and related features applies. It’s discounted to £99 if you add or already have Sky Broadband, Sky Movies or Sky Sports at their standard price. Free set up for new Sky TV customers, otherwise £50.

    1. Mark Jackson Mark Jackson says:

      I didn’t say Sky Q was free with Sky Broadband. Most of the above article focuses more on the Sky Q Hub alone, which is given to existing/new customers that take both Sky Q and Sky Broadband.

      So we are trying to find out how much existing Sky Broadband customers, who don’t take any Sky TV service, will have to pay for it (if anything).

  2. Avatar Adam says:

    I called sky this morning looking to purchase, but I said no I wasn’t willing to pay £50 set up fee when ive been a sky customer for 6 years. the customer service advisor didn’t seem to care.

    I’ll wait till sky start offering better discounts / deals.

    1. Avatar Ignition says:

      I’m sure it’ll happen eventually but for now there’ll be plenty of demand from both existing and new customers happy to pay full price.

      The early adopters will pay through the nose, then will come the standard people, then the price will drop I imagine.

  3. Avatar Paul says:

    Do the sky q hubs come when you just order sky broadband now?

  4. Avatar Sarah Hogan says:

    I just ordered Sky Q. As a customer of over ten years, I don’t have to pay anything for the Sky Silver Box and one mini box, just £50 installation. That’s not been advertised. Perhaps it should be!

  5. Avatar Paul says:

    I called up sky as an exsisiting fibre customer (ironically just dumped the TVs service) they said they are not offering the new Q hub to ant broadband customers without you paying for sky Q

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