Outlook: Murdoch set for digital dogfight
Saturday 01 August 1998
AFTER MONTHS of hype and corporate bluster, the battle lines for the great digital dogfight of 1999 are becoming clear.
On the evidence of the past week, Rupert Murdoch's BSkyB looks like the clear favourite. While British Digital Broadcasting - sorry, ON Digital - announced its new name in a blaze of publicity on Tuesday, it couldn't disguise the fact that the rest of its strategy is in tatters.
The reason is that Sky, which unveiled its plans on Thursday. It will launch in October with a massive marketing campaign - ably supported, no doubt, by Uncle Rupert's newspapers - and an impressive array of channels, sport and pay-per-view movies. The whole lot will be available for a starting price of less than pounds 10 a month and, hey, when you've forked out pounds 200 for a dish they'll even come and install it for nothing.
This leaves ON Digital's offering looking rather threadbare. It was supposed to be a cheap and cheerful alternative to Sky, bringing you 30 channels for under a tenner without the stigma of having to fit a dish to the side of the house. But Sky has signed up all the channels - many of them on an exclusive basis. And it looks as if ON Digital's price advantage has disappeared as well.
However, this is not a two-horse race. While Sky looks streaks ahead of ON Digital already, the real threat could be from the cable television companies. The prospect of the full 200 channels, no satellite dish, and high-speed internet access as well could prove a compelling alternative to what Sky is offering. As ON Digital has found to its cost, however, Sky will not give up its stranglehold on the couch potato without a fight.
International Women's Day 2014: The shocking statistics that show why it is still so important
Feminist quotes to inspire you on the International Women's Day
Oscar Pistorius trial first week: Never mind a media scrum – murder case becomes bizarre safari following the tracks of a wounded lion
International Women’s Day: 'When a man gives his opinion, he's a man. When a woman gives her opinion, she's a bitch' - feminist quotes from female icons to inspire you
Malaysia Airlines plane: Oil slick is first sign that missing flight crashed into sea killing up to 239 on board
Apple's Tim Cook: Business isn’t just about making profit
Thousands of young people forced to go without food after benefits wrongly stopped under 'draconian' new sanctions regime
Ukraine crisis: New navy chief 'defects' and surrenders Crimean HQ as Putin claims ultranationalists forced intervention
Britain's top vet sparks controversy with call for ban on slashing animals' throats in 'ritual' slaughters for halal and kosher meat products
Ukraine crisis: Russia dismisses '3am ultimatum' as 'total nonsense'
If you're horrified by a flame-roasted dog, you should be shocked at a hog roast
- 1 To those who can’t see the point of International Women’s Day: you are the very reason it exists
- 2 International Women's Day 2014: The shocking statistics that show why it is still so important
- 4 Orgasm machine to deliver climax at the push of a button
iJobs Money & Business
£12000 per annum: Inspiring Interns: The company works with Tier 1 FTSE 100 Ba...
£32000 - £36000 per annum + generous benefits: Pro-Recruitment Group: * TAX * ...
£37000 - £40000 per annum + £20000 benefits package: Pro-Recruitment Group: **...
£30000 - £35000 per annum + generous benefits: Pro-Recruitment Group: Mixed Ta...