BT Sport subscribers to get major package upgrade completely free of charge

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Look out, Sky Sports. Telecoms giant BT has agreed a deal with Warner Bros. Discovery to merge its BT Sport platform with Eurosport UK.

Revealed via a press release, the joint venture, worth up to £540 million, will grant “the majority” of existing BT TV subscribers in the UK and Ireland access to Discovery Plus – home to Eurosport’s live and on-demand offering in the UK – “by the end of 2022” at no additional cost.

Both BT Sport and Eurosport UK will initially retain their separate brands and product propositions, the companies have said, though the deal means customers can soon expect to find coverage of the Premier League, UEFA Champions League, Olympic Games, tennis Grand Slams, cycling Grand Tours and Premiership Rugby all in one place.

“As a global sports and entertainment broadcaster, Warner Bros. Discovery is the perfect partner to work with us to take BT Sport to the next stage of its growth,” Marc Allera, CEO BT’s Consumer division, said in a statement. “We’re excited to be joining forces to bring the best of BT Sport together with Eurosport UK to create a fantastic new sports offer alongside all the entertainment that Discovery Plus has to offer BT customers.”

BT subscribers will, therefore, soon have access to more than just sports coverage – Discovery Plus’ library is also home to myriad reality shows and documentaries. 

As mentioned, when the deal initiates later this year, both BT Sport and Discovery Plus (and therefore Eurosport) will remain separate entities, though the pair are set to fall under one roof – potentially as part of a service with an entirely new name – in the near future.

The agreement between the two broadcasting behemoths will extend beyond 2030, and includes a minimum revenue guarantee of approximately £500m per annum in its first four years. 

Don’t sleep on the sports streaming wars 

Much has been made of the competition between major streaming services like Netflix, Disney Plus and HBO Max in recent years, but the battleground for sports coverage – particularly in Europe – is equally hostile.

Warner Bros. Discovery’s merger with BT Sport appears to be a direct response to US entertainment giant Comcast’s acquisition of Sky and its associated sports platforms nearly three years ago, with both corporations vying to become the dominant European sports broadcaster. 

Until now, Comcast and Sky seemed in prime position, but the former’s newfound ownership of UEFA Champions League rights could make the pendulum swing in the other direction. 

News of the deal between Warner Bros. Discovery and BT won’t be welcomed by DAZN bosses, either. The US sports streaming service has maintained very public designs on becoming the “Netflix of Sport” for several years, but with the broadcasting rights to most major competitions now snapped up by competitors, there’s very little sporting pie left to acquire.

Axel Metz
Phones Editor

Axel is TechRadar's UK-based Phones Editor, reporting on everything from the latest Apple developments to newest AI breakthroughs as part of the site's Mobile Computing vertical. Having previously written for publications including Esquire and FourFourTwo, Axel is well-versed in the applications of technology beyond the desktop, and his coverage extends from general reporting and analysis to in-depth interviews and opinion.  Axel studied for a degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick before joining TechRadar in 2020, where he then earned an NCTJ qualification as part of the company’s inaugural digital training scheme.