BT cuts the price of Sky Sports

BT stepped up its push into the pay-TV market today by cutting the price of watching Premier League football to as little as £6.99 a month.

The Sky Sports 1 offer, available to customers who take a bundle of broadband and calls for 24 months, follows the communications regulator's ruling that BSkyB must sell its premium sports content to rivals at regulated prices.



BT Vision customers who want to add Sky Sports 1 and Sky Sports 2 on a month-by-month contract will pay £16.99, which still undercuts Sky's price.



The telecoms group will begin offering the packages from today in time for the start of the new Premier League football season in August.



However, it is likely to be doing so at a loss after reports today said BSkyB plans to increase its retail prices for sport, meaning that the price it charges wholesale customers such as BT will increase accordingly.



Sky is said to be increasing the retail price of Sky Sports 1 and Sky Sports 2 by £3. Under the wholesale pricing mechanism set out in Ofcom's ruling, this means the wholesale cost of both channels rises from £17.14 to £19.07 a month, close to the level from which Ofcom brought them down.



The telecoms company currently has 467,000 BT Vision subscribers.



BSkyB is taking legal action over the Ofcom ruling but in the meantime agreed to sell the channels at the price it currently charges Virgin Media, its only wholesale customer.



The difference between this and the recommended Ofcom price will be held in a special account until the outcome of the full hearing of BSkyB's appeal.



Consumer groups said Ofcom's intervention meant more choice and lower prices for viewers, but sporting bodies reacted furiously to the potential cut in funding.



Ofcom's announcement followed a three-year investigation into the industry after concerns were raised by BT, Virgin Media, TopUp TV and Setanta, which has since gone bust.



BT Retail chief executive Gavin Patterson said: "We expect that entry prices as low as £6.99 will welcome in a huge number of extra customers who'd love to enjoy these channels, but thought they were too expensive.



"A more competitive market will ensure that customers continue to get the best sport for the sharpest prices and this opening of the market will be in the best interests of customers."

Mike Darcey, Sky's chief operating officer, said: "BT will make a big noise about a couple of channels but they may find that customers value a much wider choice of viewing.



"With Sky, customers can enjoy the full set of five Sky Sports channels, the best choice of HD viewing and dozens of other high-quality channels.



"Customers are smart enough to look behind the headlines and compare quality and value across the full bundle of services. If BT really wanted to give customers a fair deal, it would stop charging so much for its broadband and phone services."

Suggested Topics
Life and Style
A teenager boy wakes up.
life
Life and Style
Researchers have said it could take only two questions to identify a problem with alcohol
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Critics say Kipling showed loathing for India's primitive villagers in The Jungle Book
filmChristopher Walken, Bill Murray, Scarlett Johanssen Idris Elba, Andy Serkis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Cate Blanchett and Christian Bale
Life and Style
Playing to win: for Tanith Carey, pictured with Lily, right, and Clio, even simple games had to have an educational purpose
lifeTanith Carey explains what made her take her foot off the gas
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
A still from Duncan Campbell's hour-long film 'It for Others'
Turner Prize 2014
Life and Style
food + drink
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Tony Hadley in a scene from ‘Soul Boys Of The Western World’
musicSpandau Ballet are back together - on stage and screen
Arts and Entertainment
From left to right: Ed Stoppard as Brian Epstein, Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black and Elliott Cowan as George Martin in 'Cilla'
tvCilla review: A poignant ending to mini-series
News
i100
Life and Style
Bearing up: Sebastian Flyte with his teddy Aloysius in Brideshead Revisited
lifePhilippa Perry explains why a third of students take a bear to uni
Arts and Entertainment
Sir Alan Sugar appearing in a shot from Apprentice which was used in a Cassette Boy mashup
artsA judge will rule if pieces are funny enough to be classed as parodies
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Financial Accountant / Bookkeeper- Drinks Brand / FMCG

£30000 - £34000 per annum: Sauce Recruitment: A new and dynamic drinks and FMC...

Application Support Engineer / Graduate Software Support Engineer

£25 - 30k (DOE): Guru Careers: An Application Support Engineer / Graduate Soft...

Account Director

£45-50k + Excellent Benefits: Guru Careers: An Account Director / AD with a st...

Digital Account Director

£Competitive + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Digital Account Direct...

Day In a Page

Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?
Royal Ballet star dubbed 'Charlize Theron in pointe shoes' takes on Manon

Homegrown ballerina is on the rise

Royal Ballet star Melissa Hamilton is about to tackle the role of Manon
Education, eduction, education? Our growing fascination with what really goes on in school

Education, education, education

TV documentaries filmed in classrooms are now a genre in their own right
It’s reasonable to negotiate with the likes of Isis, so why don’t we do it and save lives?

It’s perfectly reasonable to negotiate with villains like Isis

So why don’t we do it and save some lives?
This man just ran a marathon in under 2 hours 3 minutes. Is a 2-hour race in sight?

Is a sub-2-hour race now within sight?

Dennis Kimetto breaks marathon record
We shall not be moved, say Stratford's single parents fighting eviction

Inside the E15 'occupation'

We shall not be moved, say Stratford single parents
Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Talks between all touched by the crisis in Syria and Iraq can achieve as much as the Tornadoes, says Patrick Cockburn
Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

The Tory MP speaks for the first time about the devastating effect of his father's bankruptcy
Witches: A history of misogyny

Witches: A history of misogyny

The sexist abuse that haunts modern life is nothing new: women have been 'trolled' in art for 500 years
Shona Rhimes interview: Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Writer and producer of shows like Grey's Anatomy, Shonda Rhimes now has her own evening of primetime TV – but she’s taking it in her stride
'Before They Pass Away': Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Jimmy Nelson travelled the world to photograph 35 threatened tribes in an unashamedly glamorous style