Sky has begun rolling out a significant (and free!) picture quality upgrade for its satellite-free TV offering, Sky Glass, in the UK.
Arriving as part of the company’s latest firmware update, all Sky Glass displays will soon benefit from improvements to contrast ratio, brightness and colour accuracy. Black colours, in particular, are set to appear much darker than they do at present.
Those might sound like run-of-the-mill display upgrades, but having seen a side-by-side comparison between Sky Glass old and new during the brand’s recent Sky Stream launch event, we’re inclined to say that this is the most significant Sky Glass update so far.
Clips from Uncharted, Spider-Man: Homecoming and an F1 night race were shown to demonstrate Sky Glass’ local dimming improvements – and the difference between the Dolby Atmos-enabled TV in its previous and updated form was palpable.
Sky says the picture quality upgrade will have made its way to all Sky Glass TVs by December 9 – your own setup may have already benefited from the changes.
Sky’s latest Sky Glass firmware update also brings with it a bolstered Vivid Mode and the addition of the ITVX app, which is likewise coming to Sky Q boxes soon.
A master-glass in deflection?
News of a free display upgrade will come as a much-needed tonic to Sky Glass customers left frustrated by Sky’s commitment to introducing a £5 surcharge for skipping ads on Sky TV.
Sky launched the bluntly-named Ad Skipping TV pack earlier this year, and bundled it for free with introductory Sky Glass and Sky Stream contracts. But, as of November 29, any new Sky customers who whizz through ads when watching TV using the brand’s Restart (Watch from start), Playlist or Sky on Demand features will be charged an additional £5 monthly fee.
The new fee won’t affect everyone right away. For instance, if you bought a Sky Glass TV or Sky Stream puck before November 29, and are still under your initial contract with Sky, you’ll still be able to skip ads as normal. You will, however, be faced with the optional surcharge if and when you eventually come to renegotiate with Sky.
For now, Sky Q customers are immune from the ad-skipping fee, and Sky has assured TechRadar that it currently has no plans to introduce the optional extra into Sky Q packages in the future. If the broadcasting giant decides to change its tune on that front, though, we'll make sure you're the first to know.
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Axel is a London-based Senior Staff Writer at TechRadar, reporting on everything from the latest Apple developments to newest movies as part of the site's daily news output. 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.