Sky Glass’ reception when it went on sale late in 2021 was mixed, at least from the critical community, but there’s no arguing against the ambition of the set in its attempt to bring picture, sound and wide-ranging content into one device. Later this year you’ll be able to get one of the TV’s best features on its own.
The Sky Stream puck has been seen as the USP of the Sky Glass experience, enabling Sky customers to transfer the Sky Glass interface to other screens in the home. Sky has announced it’ll be making the Stream puck available as a standalone product, so you won’t need to buy the Sky Glass TV to get it.
This announcement also comes with the news that the high spec 4K camera we caught a glimpse of during the launch is also set for release, unlocking more features and services for the family, especially services for keeping in touch with others.
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The Sky Stream puck is a plug and play device that allows those with Sky subscriptions the opportunity to stream from the likes of Netflix, Sky Atlantic, Disney+, iPlayer, Spotify and others to another screen. Like Sky Glass it also supports the ‘Hello Sky’ voice commands as well as Sky’s Playlist feature, which acts as the glue that gathers saved content from apps, on-demand and TV into one convenient place.
The puck will, of course, not have the built-in Dolby Atmos system of Quantum Dot panel that feature in the Sky Glass TV, but it does supports Ultra HD resolutions at 60fps and is Dolby Atmos compliant. Offering the puck as a standalone product offers a degree of flexibility and freedom in partnering the streamer with a screen and sound system of your own choosing. It’s pretty much what we’ve been asking for since the launch of Sky Glass, and we can certainly see some people begin to take more notice.
No prices for either the camera or puck have been confirmed, but a spokesman for Sky said more details will be revealed closer to launch.
Making the puck available on its own makes plenty of sense
As soon as we saw Sky Glass unveiled, the team at Trusted didn’t all have eyes for the TV, quite a few of us were interested in the Stream puck.
It’s been on the wishlist for several years that the Sky experience came in a form that was more manageable. As great as Sky Q has been, up until recently you needed a satellite dish to get it. And despite the convenience of a TV with built-in Atmos sound system and Sky Glass interface, some are very happy with the TVs they already own. The fact that the Stream puck could operate independently of the TV but wasn’t made available separately felt like a missed opportunity.
And that’s what makes the Stream puck being divorced (if that’s not too crude a word) from Sky Glass a decision that makes sense. Not many want to ditch their TVs, especially those spending at the higher end of the AV market, so unleashing the Stream puck puts Sky into competition with the likes of Amazon, Google and Roku as add-on.
And in the UK at least, those streamers may be slightly worried by what Sky has to offer. If the pricing is competitive, I’ll wager there’s plenty of people that’ll flock to the Stream puck in a heartbeat.