UPDATE: The box is still on track for August, but Sky tell us that the monthly sports pass is now available at http://www.nowtv.com/sports (opens in new tab)
Sky is launching a new Now TV box in August, hopefully just in time for the new footie season to start.
The current Now TV box is getting on for two years old now and is ripe for an update. That's exactly what it's getting – again using the same design and components as the latest Roku box, and this time around that's the Roku 3.
The new box's faster processor will come in handy for the updated UI design Sky is putting together for the updated device.
It's also continuing with the updates, promising improved search functionality as well as Netflix-aping features – like automatically playing the next episode of a show – over the next few months.
As well as improvements to the software side, the new Now TV box will also have a wired internet connection – via a standard ethernet port – to offer a robust alternative to the wireless stream.
Just before the new Now TV box drops, Sky will also be launching a new Sky Sports Month Pass as well. Building on its existing day and week passes, the month-long option gives access to all seven Sky Sports channels contract-free.
The Sky Sports Month Pass will be available in July for £31.99.
Sky's Now TV service has been a huge success for the company, with analyst IHS estimating that it is now almost solely reliant on the service for growing its subscriber base.
Over the last year it has added more than 400,000 subscribers with IHS's research indicating that without the service Sky would have actually lost 52,000 subscribers to its traditional pay TV service in the last quarter.
The overall number of pay TV subscribers in the UK has risen by one million in the last year, so Now TV is definitely a big driver for the market.