In the first of what I’m hoping will be several similar announcements, Vodafone just dropped the bomb: iSKY streaming will be free for Vodafone landline broadband users.
We don’t know what iSKY actually is yet, nor what type, quantity, nor quality of programming will be available. Still, even if it’s nothing but ancient re-runs in less than standard definition, this is big news. It marks a further march away from neutrality of content treatment, and if a couple more large ISPs sign up (rumours have been swirling around Orcon), also marks the death of small independent ISPs in New Zealand. But who cares when we get free on-demand streaming right?
The “note to editors” on the release says “see www.isky.co.nz for more info”, but the website doesn’t seem to be live yet.
Full press release follows:
SKY, on TV, PC, or Mobile…only on Vodafone
Vodafone is delighted to partner with SKY to launch iSKY which allows customers to stream SKY TV over the internet at home at no additional cost.
Customers will not have to worry about how much of their fixed-line broadband bundle they are using, as iSKY traffic will not be counted towards their plan.
Vodafone’s GM of Total Communications, Justin Caswell, says Vodafone and SKY TV have a strong working relationship.
“In 2006 Vodafone brought SKY Mobile TV to the mobile, in 2009 we brought FREE MY SKY HDi upgrades to our Ideal and Ultimate broadband customers. Now, with iSKY, customers have the freedom to chose how they want to consume media, with the added bonus of data not being counted against their fixed-line broadband data allowance at home”.
iSKY will be available to all Vodafone residential broadband customers later this year.