Now TV Box review

  • £9.99

A super cheap subsidised Smart TV box from Sky

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Our Verdict

For those who want to add a little smart to their TV this is an incredibly cheap option with some clever functionality.

For

  • Incredibly cheap
  • Access to key catchup services
  • Simple and intuitive to use

Against

  • A little plasticky
  • Inevitably pushes NOW TV

This is an update to the original Now TV review. It has been done to reflect the changes in the service since the initial review was written.

In a few short years the media landscape has changed from one where our television choices are dictated by channels, to services offering up a whole host of on-demand content of which a viewer can cherry pick.

Premium on-demand content is a burgeoning area that is so far being dominated by the likes of Amazon Prime Instant Video and Netflix – Sky's service has quite obviously been launched to counteract these non-contract, all-you-can-eat offerings.

Not content with Now TV just being online or an app on a TV or set-top box, Sky has decided to release its own hardware that costs less than the price of a Blu-ray.

Check out the rivals...

Now TV review

Sky's Now TV Box is a serious statement of streaming intent from the broadcaster. The box's size may be tiny but it holds enormous potential for Sky to open up its premium movie, sports and TV bundles to customers who have yet to sign on to its wares.

At just £19.99 the Now TV Box is a bargain. It's cheap enough to buy on impulse and on mass if you have a variety of televisions in your house that aren't yet 'smart'.

Within this price you get a bundle of either movies, entertainment and sports. The offers for Now TV do seem to ever-changing but at the time of this review you could go for a two-month movie pass for £19.99, a three month entertainment pass for £19.99 or a two-day sports pass for... yup, you've guessed £19.99.

Now TV

For that money you get access to a host of catchup and streaming TV services, including the ever-popular BBC iPlayer, Sky News, BBC News and Demand 5, as well as the option of watching NOW TV services from Sky if you want to fork out for a day, weekly or month pass.

For those of you familiar with a Roku box, you may have some fun playing spot the difference. The Now TV Box brings the same design (although it is in white and blue) and the same small size.

To make sure that there is a Now TV box for every occasion, Sky has also released a number of limited edition versions of the box. The favourite one we have had in the office is the Walking Dead version.

Whichever version you get, they all come with the Roku channel store.

Now TV

That allows you to pick from other available media channels and apps, and to add them to your 'home' screen once you install them so you have easy access.

The tiny box and little remote arrive in a small box that also contains an HDMI cable and power cable. The box is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand (84mm x 84mm x 24mm), and the inclusion of an HDMI cable means that you can be up and running in a matter of minutes.

The box connects to your WiFi, so there's no need to have it next to your router.

Now TV review

The remote is small and shiny white plastic - just like the box itself - but is intuitive and simple. The buttons are a back and home button, an okay and arrow pad, rewind, fast forward and play/pause plus a star key, an apps key and a dedicated Now TV button

Before I could get started with the box, I did need to register for Now TV. I didn't need to pay for anything - just register for the service and type in a username and password.

Now TV review

As this Sky Now TV Box is all about pushing people to its on-demand service, you would think that this would be mandatory but there is a Continue without registering option.

Now TV