Examining Sky Q: A new form of home entertainment system
New Sky TV product attempting to ‘re-imagine’ TV content and viewing
Sky’s new home entertainment system Sky Q offers a broad range of new smart features that are designed to transform the viewing experience.
From fluid viewing across a range of devices to streamed TV content via wireless connections and a Bluetooth remote control, there are several Sky Q bundles to choose from.
“We wanted to completely re-imagine TV, making it flexible and seamless across the screens in our lives,” said Sky Ireland’s Director of Product and Customer Growth Ann-Marie MacKay at the product’s launch.
Sky Q is Sky’s attempt to do just that. Existing smart features such as being able to pause, record and rewind live TV are included, but so too are other TV content options, including ultra-high definition programming and the ability to stream TV.
Getting to grips with Fluid Viewing
Sky Q uses a wireless connection to link multiple devices throughout the home while managing online viewing via a central hub.
Sky has named this concept Fluid Viewing and claims it is the first service of its kind to be available. Customers are able to pause whatever they are watching in one room before picking it up in another, while also streaming TV to different devices or saving recordings for when they wish to view without an internet connection.
The Sky Q Silver bundle
The more advanced premium product of the two available, the Sky Q Silver bundle includes more than 300 channels, including 60 in high definition, and an extensive range of Sky box sets.
Customers are able to watch four different programmes at the same time, and record four simultaneously while watching a fifth live.
The Sky Q Box includes enough storage space for 350 hours of TV – or around 200 HD movies.
With the Sky Q Silver Bundle, viewers can also stream TV on up to two tablet devices when using the Sky Q app, meaning there shouldn’t be a need to fight over the remote.
The Sky Q Silver Box also includes internet platforms such as Vevo and YouTube while its sync music and photos from Spotify and Facebook respectively.
Sky Q has overhauled the TV guide too, as it includes a live stream preview of a new channel – ideal for those wanting to watch a film and stay up to date with a football match at the same time for example.
Customers are also able to transform their Sky Q Boxes into WiFi hotspots to enhance connectivity within their home.
Sky Q Pricing
Sky Q Silver includes one Sky Q Mini box and is priced at €67 per month. A one-off ‘smart features charge’ of €299 covers installation although customers signing up to Sky Sports, Sky Movies or Sky Broadband will see this fall to €99.
Additional Sky Q Mini boxes to enable viewing on a third screen will cost €99, while existing customers will need to pay a €50 installation fee on top.
All Sky Q equipment is loaned to a customer for the duration of their contract – which is a minimum of 18 months – and must be returned. Any repairs during that time are free however.
The Basic Sky Q package
Sky Q does not come with a Sky Q Mini box and has reduced storage of 1 terabyte alongside the ability to record three programmes and watch a fourth live.
It costs less at €55 per month while the smart features cost is also lower at €249 – again this is reduced should a customer opt for other services alongside it.