This weekend Sky Sports Now was available on the Apple TV for free. Normally costing £9.99 for a day pass, it allows users to watch all of the Sky Sports channels without a Sky subscription.

Presumably they had a free weekend to raise awareness and promote the app. But after trying it a couple of times over the weekend, I’m unlikely to be buying a day pass any time soon.

The first try was on Saturday afternoon, when I tuned in to Sky Sports News to watch the football scores come in on Soccer Saturday. Well, I tried to watch, but every couple of minutes either the stream would freeze or the sound would get lost. I gave up after 15 minutes and watched the BBC’s Final Score instead.

Next try was Sunday afternoon, for the Chelsea vs Manchester United game. This was a lot more successful, with only one freeze in the first half, but after that it was fine. However, the picture quality was awful. It was especially noticeable when the camera panned quickly (as it would when watching sports), or when the crowd was in the background, where they became one big blur.

I’m not sure how often I would be paying £9.99 for a day pass anyway, even if the service was perfect. I won’t want to spend the whole day watching sports, so would be paying that for one football match or maybe one F1 race. £9.99 is way too much1. But £9.99 for a day of blurry pictures and regular freezes? No thanks.

  1. I guess the reason for this price is to ensure people don’t start cancelling their Sky Sports subscriptions, getting their sports for £3 a match/race instead of paying £22 a month and watching the same 2 or 3 programmes. [return]