Sky has announced an agreement to bring its Sky Player to Humax Freeview set-top boxes, bringing its content to thousands of users.
Although it has already done deals with 3View and Cello, as well as with Microsoft on the Xbox, Sky's latest rollout of its IPTV video on demand service is a significant milestone.
Humax's Freeview boxes are both popular and critically acclaimed, and the company represents a key player in the Freeview market.
The news emerged in a speech given by Sky's chief executive Jeremy Darroch in Cannes.
"Until recently, Sky Player has largely been confined to the PC screen but that is changing fast. Since last autumn, it has been available on the XBox and this year it will roll out to more broadband-enabled devices through deals with the likes of Fetch TV, 3 View and Cello," said Darroch.
"Just today, we're announcing a further expansion of Sky Player through a new agreement with Humax, the leading provider of Freeview boxes. And there are more deals in the pipeline."
Sky is still furiously fighting against Ofcom being able to set the price of its premium sports content, and much of Darroch's speech dealt in how to ensure that content producers were well served.
But with the Sky Player appearing on an increasing number on platforms, the company appears to be reinforcing its mantra that 'content is king' – and looking beyond the satellite platform for audience.
More choice and control
"In providing both new and existing customers with more choice and control over how they access Sky content, we continue to harness secure and high-quality distribution platforms like Humax," said Griff Parry, Sky's Director of On-Demand.
"We know that many Sky homes also have Freeview in other rooms, and this provides a great way for them to enjoy Sky away from their Sky box. And for new customers, particularly those in Freeview homes, it provides an innovative new access point to Sky's high-quality pay TV content."
Humax's Graham North added: "The addition of Sky Player on our Freeview HD boxes ensures Humax is positioned to offer consumers an exciting way to experience digital TV, with great content and a range of home networking and content sharing features."
Sky's online TV service will launch across Humax's new range of IP-enabled high definition (HD) digital boxes for Freeview.
"This includes the UK's first Freeview HD box, the Humax HD-FOX T2, which launched in February 2010, and a Humax HD digital TV recorder planned for the coming months," confirmed Sky.