Sky would-be-viewers unwilling to fork out for a subscription to all umpteen channels just to watch the few programmes of interest will no doubt be pleased to hear the broadcaster is planning to offer access to its Sky Player to non-subscribers. Currently only Sky's customers can access the catch-up service allowing viewing of Sky content after it has aired, rather like the BBC iPlayer, so it's an interesting step.
According to the Guardian, Sky's chief Operating Officer, Mike Darcey, indicated this extension to the service would arrive "in the next few months". Darvey further commented that "until now, Sky Player has been a 'bonus' for existing Sky customers. This will continue but in its new guise there will also be access on PC for a dedicated subscription service."
So far Sky Sports is lined up to hit the online subscription service, with Sky1 and film channels in the pipeline. Although negotiations with US providers are still in progress to try and secure the right for the latter pair's content - most of which is sourced from America.
Darcey cited the reaching of a point where for most people quality is 'good enough' as the primary reason for Sky choosing now to launch such a service. Sky is apparently still on track to hit its target of 10 million subscribers by 2010.