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New strategies announced by BSkyB

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BSkyB has announced new plans to continue its dominance of the UK and Ireland pay-TV markets, after yesterday publishing better than expected financial and subscriber results for the third quarter.

Top of BSkyB’s agenda is to launch a multimillion-pound marketing campaign to promote Sky Plus, its personal video recorder system. Britons remain relatively unaware about the capabilities of digital video recording. With TiVo withdrawing its operations from the UK and Sky having achieved a foothold of 79,000 subscribers, BSkyB executive Tony Ball evidently feels the time is right to really push the market.

Despite the new campaign, Sky Plus will remain a prohibitively expensive option for many, with the receiver itself costing £199.00 and the subscription fee placed at £10.00 In addition, the functionality of Sky Plus has not yet reached the same potential as the PVRs offered by manufacturers such as TiVo in the US.

In addition to its PVR plans, BSkyB is also currently reviewing an option to launch a mass market entertainment channel on Freeview, the free-to-air DTT service it runs in partnership with the BBC and Crown Castle. BSkyB already offers Sky News, Sky Sports News and Sky Travel on Freeview. It says it would not be concerned with an expanded Freeview competing with its own pay-TV service, claiming the two different broadcast services attract exclusive demographics.