UK pay-television broadcaster BSkyB has extended its wholesale agreement for its Sky Sports channels with telecommunications company TalkTalk, while its Sky Sports News channel will undergo a relaunch.
TalkTalk has made Sky’s sports channels available to customers of its pay-television service YouView since its launch in 2012. Under the latest multi-year agreement, TalkTalk’s Sky Sports package will also include catch-up and on-demand content, Sky Sports Box Office for major boxing and wrestling events available on a pay-per-view basis and the new dedicated European football channel Sky Sports 5.
The full range of Sky Sports channels will be available to TalkTalk customers through its monthly Sky Sports Boost subscription package. Earlier this year, Sky started offering TalkTalk customers the ability to purchase the Sky Sports day pass through its internet television service Now TV.
Sky Sports 5 goes live on August 12, the same day that Sky Sports News will relaunch as Sky Sports News HQ to coincide with the start of the 2014-15 football season.
It will air on Sky channel 401 from a new studio space almost double the size of Sky Sports News’ current home, boasting an 18 square-metre video wall amid 11 different presenting positions. Additionally, the channel will incorporate an enhanced digital offering aligned with Sky Sports’ apps and official website and increase social media integration within broadcasts.
Sky Sports managing director Barney Francis said: “Sky Sports News is the number one sports news service in Europe and we aim to make it even better. The launch of Sky Sports News HQ will extend and enhance the experience across TV, mobile and online. By launching on channel 401, we want Sky Sports News HQ be the first port of call for sports fans, transforming the way they follow sport in a multiplatform era.”