BSkyB Unveils £9.99 Set-Top Box, Takes Aim at TalkTalk

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Yesterday, the £22 Google Chromecast seemed like a nicely inexpensive way to stream video to a television. Today, BSkyB asks, Why pay more than £10?

Sky has released the Now TV Box, a £9.99 set-top box aimed at low-end customers who might have signed with YouView. This week, TalkTalk announced that YouView gained 160,000 customers this quarter, many of them upgrading from Freeview and Freesat services. That puts it at 390,000 subscriptions in the nine months since it launched. Thanks to Sky, budget-minded TV viewers currently have another option.

Now TV Box owners can stream on-demand content from BBC iPlayer, Channel 5's Demand 5, BBC News, and Sky News free of charge over a Wi-Fi network. They also have the option of accessing paid content, such as Sky Sports (£9.99 for one day) or subscription movies (starting at £8.99 for three months).

The Now TV Box looks exactly like a Roku box and remote, except for the color, so Sky must have contracted the devices from Roku. In an interview with The Guardian, Sky CEO Jeremy Darroch said the company loses a small amount on each box, but that it will quickly make up that loss if customers chose paid services.

"It will enable us to target Now TV to new segments of the market we don't currently penetrate very highly," Darroch told The Guardian.

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