Sky Anytime - History

History

On 27 March 2007, Sky launched its Sky Anytime service for owners of Sky HD set top boxes. The service is a Push video on demand (push VoD) system similar to Top Up TV's TV Favourites, where the Sky+ PVR automatically records programmes transmitted over-night. The service uses 140GB of previously reserved disk space on Sky+ HD boxes hard-disk space whilst on standard Sky+ boxes it uses 80GB of the hard-disk space. The service is intended to provide a catch-up of a selection of the last week's programming. The service was launched on PVR3 Sky+ boxes manufactured by Pace and Amstrad on 24 April 2007. The update for Thomson boxes was delayed because of technical difficulties, it was finally launched for Thomson boxes on 29 May 2007.

On 30 July 2009, Sky confirmed the launch of a ‘pull’ video-on-demand service for 2010, adding to the Sky Anytime ‘push’ VOD service. On 29 April 2010, BSkyB revealed that it will name its video-on-demand service Sky Anytime+. “It will be a broad offering at launch with a large range of content across the range of content that we show,” CEO Jeremy Darroch said. “(It will feature) progressive download using the broadband return pathway and the hard disc in a combined way. All of the boxes are VOD-ready, so we’ll be able to roll it out to all of the box population.” Sky Anytime+ began a staggered roll out from 26 October 2010, The majority of Sky's customers were able to receive the service by the end of 2010. In the phased rollout, all remaining receivers were enabled in the first part of 2011. A background over-the-air update in 2010 upgraded all existing Sky+ HD boxes with the software needed to run Anytime+.

In July 2011, Sky Anytime was added to Virgin Media with content from Sky Living, following on from Sky's purchase of Virgin Media Television. Additional content began rolling out on 11 October 2011 ahead of a full launch the following day. Programming is available in both standard and high definition from Sky1, Sky Arts, Sky Living, Sky Movies, Sky News and Sky Sports. However HD content from premium channels is limited to TiVo subscribers. Sky Anytime content also became available through Virgin Media Player online on 28 October 2011 but not on mobile devices.

On 6 September 2012, Sky announced that Sky Anytime and Anytime+ would be merged and rebranded as On Demand, along with the addition of a Catch-up TV section. This occurred on 26 September 2012, with Sky Anytime becoming a Showcase section and Sky Anytime+ being split into Library, Movies and Sky Store.

On 11 October 2012, the download component of the On Demand service was activated in Ireland, where Anytime+ had previously been unavailable.

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