Sky Sports offers free trial on Freeview for first time

BSkyB is to offer non-Sky Sports customers a one day trial on free to air TV  on the first day of the Premier League season as it looks to blunt the impact of the launch of BT Sport.  

Sky Sports

Sky Sports 1 programmes, including a live Premier League game, will replace regular programming on Pick TV on Freeview and YouView as well as on Sky 2, available on Sky and other pay TV services such as Virgin Media, on 17 August.

Sky ran a similar scheme last year offering Sky Sports to subscribers to pay-tv services but it is the first time the offer has been extended to Freeview customers. 

The move comes ahead of the launch of BT Sport on 1 August, which is currently being advertised as “free”, if ordered with a BT Broadband line. BT Sport will show 38 Premier League matches a season.

A spokesman for BSkyB insisted the move was about showcasing its new line-up for the new season and denied it is a response to the launch of BT Sport.

Sky and BT have been trading blows ahead of the new season. Sky scored a victory last week after Ofcom ruled it was right to refuse to broadcast BT Sport ads on its own sports channels. 

It has also lodged a complaint with the Advertising Standards Authority, alleging BT Sport’s “free” claim is “misleading” because it fails to acknowledge there are additional costs involved in becoming a BT Sports subscriber. 

For its part, BT has complained to Ofcom over Sky’s refusal to wholesale Sky Sports 1 and 2 to YouView.

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