There’s a new way to watch Sky TV in your home, thanks to Apple

Sky has announced a new partnership with Apple, which will see the iPhone manufacturer’s streaming service, Apple TV +, arrive on the Sky Q and Sky Glass platforms in the coming weeks. Not only that, but the new deal will also see Sky Go hit Apple TV HD and Apple TV 4K set-top boxes before the end of the year.

Earlier this year, Sky-owned NOW (formerly NOW TV), which offers contract-free streaming of the catalog of live channels, box sets and on-demand movies, added support for the app. Apple TV. This software, available on Apple TV as well as iPhone, iPad and Mac, brings together shows from a wide variety of sources, including Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub and Apple’s TV + service. Episodes of your favorite shows, movies and sporting events can be added to a queue, called Up Next.

And now Sky has taken it a step further in supporting Apple’s TV ambitions by developing a new version of its Sky Go app for the platform. Yes, Sky Go will soon be available for download from the App Store on Apple TV HD and Apple TV 4K boxes.

For those who don’t know, Sky Go is an optional supplement available to subscribers with Sky Q or Sky Glass at home. The service, which is already available through the standalone iPhone, iPad, Android and PlayStation platforms, allows customers to stream live channels, on-demand shows, and their own recordings on the go. Sky Go includes support for free channels, like ITV and Channel 4, as well as all the extras of your Sky subscription, like Sky Atlantic, Sky Cinema and Sky Sports.

Playback is synced between devices, so if you watch an episode of your favorite show on an iPad while on a long-haul flight, when you get home your Sky Q box will queue up the next episode of the series. . As Sky customers expect, you’ll also be able to pause and rewind live TV channels watched via Sky Go.

While this app is primarily designed to enjoy the Sky Q experience on the road, its arrival on Apple TV boxes is a different proposition. Viewers will be able to use their Apple TV set-top boxes like the Sky Q mini boxes sold by Sky to enable viewing in multiple rooms. Like the Sky Q mini, an Apple TV with the Sky Go will be able to tap into the same list of recorded shows to watch in a spare bedroom, children’s playroom, or kitchen away from the main Sky Q set-top box.

Like the Sky Q mini boxes, you won’t need to be connected to a satellite. Instead, you will only need an Ethernet or Wi-Fi connection to stream everything. While Sky Q mini boxes need to communicate with the main Sky Q set-top box (recordings are streamed over Wi-Fi from the hard drive inside that box), the Sky Go app on Apple TV will stream from Sky servers.

So, does that mean Sky Q subscribers can save an additional monthly bill by using the Apple TV they already own, instead of paying for multi-room support and Sky Q mini boxes?

Really, no. In a recent reorganization of its pricing plans, Sky has bundled Sky Go and multi-room support into a single add-on. Priced at £ 15 per month, this optional extra allows subscribers up to 4 mini Q boxes to be placed around their home for watching on multiple TVs, as well as the ability to connect with their Sky connection to Sky Go Extra up to with 4 devices.

If you have five rooms (above the main room with the Sky Q box and satellite cable) that you want to watch Sky TV at home, you can use the four included mini Q boxes and add a 4K Apple TV with Sky Go make up the numbers.

But aside from this absurdly specific use case, the arrival of Sky Go on Apple TV is just another option for those who want to watch Sky at home.

If you prefer the experience of watching on an Apple TV, or if you want the ability to watch shows and movies from the streaming services available on this platform that are not yet available through Sky Q (like horror specialists Shudder, the organizer of the Plex media library, or the plethora of Apple Arcade games available on the set-top box), this update will be music to your ears.

If you’re considering purchasing Sky Glass on Sky Q (Sky’s all-new custom-designed 4K TV that delivers the full Sky Q experience over high speed – without the need for a satellite dish attached to the wall or roof of your home? home), the arrival of Sky Go on Apple TV could be a money-saver. After all, Sky charges a one-time fee of £ 50 for each Stream Puck, the equivalent of the mini Q boxes needed to power the multi-room experience with Sky Glass.

So if you already have an Apple TV 4K, you can recreate a similar experience without spending £ 50.

Of course, some features are available with the Stream Puck – the ability to add items to your playlist, which is synced across all Sky Glass hardware – is not (yet) supported in Sky Go. But this could be a good compromise for those who don’t want their perfectly good Apple TV gear to collect dust in a corner, or who don’t want to spend more when signing up for Sky Glass.

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