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Sky signs cable deal to dish up Sky TV without the dish

Sky has signed a deal with a cable company to pipe Sky television into new homes from a central satellite receiver.

game-of-thrones-s2.jpg
Game of Thrones appears on Sky Atlantic in the UK HBO

Sky has signed a deal with a cable company to dish up Sky television -- without a dish.

Sky will be piped into newly-built homes via GTC's new-build fibre optic networks. Update: Although this is a new deal, blocks of flats and other homes are already served by fibre and copper cabling piping TV into individual homes without a dish for each and every telly.

New-build homes served by GTC will be able to enjoy the full Sky package including Sky+HD, all the channels, on top of Sky's other telecoms offers such as a fixed-line home phone and broadband with speeds of up to 300Mbps.

Currently you can access a limited palette of Sky movies, sports or TV shows -- including "Game of Thrones," "True Detective," and more -- online without a Sky subscription of satellite receiver through Now TV. But if you want the whole package, you need that dish. By contrast, Virgin Media pipes in its services through cable.

That's not to say Virgin is more easily available: cabling actually has to run to your area.

One dish to rule them all

GTC is an independent utility infrastructure provider, which means it teams up with house builders to handle the piping of gas, electricity, water, fibre and renewable connections into homes.

Under the Sky deal, GTC will provide Sky's usual channels and services. Instead of a each customer having to stick a dish on their house, GTC will use a fibre integrated reception system (FIRS): one central satellite dish receiver and aerial array to receive the signal, which is then sent the rest of the way to each home via cable. One dish to rule them all, if you will.

When and where this will begin to happen has yet to be confirmed. I've contacted Sky and GTC for more detail and I'll keep you posted.