Sky's streaming service Now TV is branching into a whole new realm, by also offering customers other services they might need at home, including broadband and phone calls.
A series of triple-play packages called Now TV Combos, launched on Wednesday, will be available from July that will allow you to mix and match various streaming services, unlimited broadband packages and calls. You'll be able to use them all without having to sign up to a contract.
Up until today,has just been a simple, cheap and easy route to accessing Sky TV shows, sport and movies without having to sign up to a pricey monthly contract. Its latest move sees it putting itself in direct competition with the UK's telecoms companies.
A slick new Smart box, both wider and flatter than the original chunky puck, will come as part of any new Combo package, as will a dedicated router. As with the previous box, this one is also built by Roku. As well as the Sky programming you've paid for, the box will allow access to 60 free-to-air TV channels from the same interface.
The price of setting up Now TV in the past has been minimal -- £10 for the box and then a small monthly fee for one or more of several Sky passes. With broadband and calls thrown into the mix the price goes up significantly.
Three speeds of broadband are available -- 17 megabits per second, 38Mbps and 76Mbps -- with a one-off setup fee of £50. This drops to £40 if you go for the 17Mbps option.
There is also line rental to take into consideration at £18 per month. Depending on the Sky Passes you choose to add on -- from Entertainment, Cinema, Sports and Kids -- a Now TV Combo could easily take you above the £50 per month mark. But Now TV is offering 12 months of special pricing that means for the most simple package you could be paying as little as £28 per month.
Set for a July release, the Now TV Box could be a great option if you know exactly what you want to watch, what speed of broadband you want and don't want to pay over the odds for a more all-encompassing package.