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Sky TV service launching into the cloud and 4K

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BSkyB is planning a radical overhaul of its Sky TV service over the next two years, according to a recent report.

In a bid to fend off the growing threat of internet TV services such as Apple TV, Roku, and the forthcoming (in the UK) Amazon Fire TV, Sky will become a considerably more connected experience.

According to The Telegraph, a special unit has been set up within the company called "Project Ethan," with the sole aim of developing a next generation system that will make it easier for Sky customers to access the service.

The Sky service will exist in the cloud rather than locally on customers’ hard drives, enabling users to watch any previously aired Sky content on any device. That will include smartphones, tablets, and internet-connected TV sets.

This interconnectedness will enable customers to start watching a program on one device and continue on another, Netflix-style.

This new cloud-based Sky service should be ready to roll out within two years, according to the report’s sources.

Another forward-thinking feature Sky is said to be working on is 4K broadcasts. BSkyB has already been trialling 4K broadcasts over its existing satellite service, but the full roll-out of ultra high definition content will require a new Sky set-top box, which is said to be in development.

BSkyB’s director of product development, Andrew Olson, last year took a board seat at ViXS. This Canadian chip manufacturer recently announced the development of a new set-top box microchip capable of handling 4K content.

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