Sky explains lack of HD in Sky Player

Impressive - but not high def
Impressive - but not high def

High definition streaming television channels over the internet 'are coming' from Sky according to Director of OnDemand Griff Parry – but the latest iteration of the Sky Player will remain SD for the foreseeable future.

Eyebrows were raised when Sky opened out its Sky Player to non-satellite subscribers, finally allowing internet only subs to its Premiership football and host of entertainment programming.

But the lack of an HD option puzzled some – especially with the boom in super-fast broadband connections.

Consistency of service

Speaking to TechRadar, Parry explained why the decision had been made to keep the bitrates lower, pointing out that a consistency of service was still vital.

"My problem with it is that, although it will probably happen in the future, I can't deliver it reliably to the majority of people so I would risk falling on my arse," said Parry.

"This is the best effort solution so lots of people aren't actually going to be able to get an SD experience all the time, so if I start playing with it and delivering HD I'm just creating a difficult communications experience.

"If I did that I'd be saying 'those people with this might be able to get this' which would be confusing."

Delight people

"I think you delight people just by delivering TV quality stuff; people's expectations of video on the net are still set by YouTube," he added.

"The iPlayer has changed that but the quality of the iPlayer is pretty poor sometimes and [Sky Player TV] is, I think, a delight.

"So for the time being if you want HD you need to get a box."

Parry does have a time frame in mind for HD content on demand from Sky, however, adding: "Long term what Sky Player is, is everything you get from a set top box - so that will include HD. But I cant see that happening in the next couple of years."

Patrick Goss

Patrick Goss is the ex-Editor in Chief of TechRadar. Patrick was a passionate and experienced journalist, and he has been lucky enough to work on some of the finest online properties on the planet, building audiences everywhere and establishing himself at the forefront of digital content.  After a long stint as the boss at TechRadar, Patrick has now moved on to a role with Apple, where he is the Managing Editor for the App Store in the UK.