At The Bleeding Edge of Technology With BrokenTV: A Picture Special*

  • 3/27/2007 07:58:00 pm
  • By Mark Gibbings-Jones

Sky's new TV on demand has launched for Sky HD viewers! We're Sky HD viewers!

"Sky+ has already given millions of people freedom from their TV schedule, helping viewers to enjoy more of the TV they want to watch."


"Anytime on TV helps our customers get even more out of Sky+ by presenting them with highlights of the weeks' programmes to watch on demand - shows that they might not otherwise have found and which they can then transfer to their Sky+ box to series link and watch every week."

We like watching programmes that are good! Let's try it out!

So, after a short holiday, the 'having the red button do something from the TV guide' option is back. Anytime TV. We can barely wait to see the list of exciting programmes from all our favourite channels (apart from BBC One, BBC Two, BBC Three, BBC Four, BBC HD, ITV1, ITV2, ITV3, ITV4, Channel Four, E4, More4, Film4, Five, Five US, Five Life, Paramount 1, Paramount 2, Bravo, Sci-Fi, UKTV Gold, UKTVG2, Living, Challenge, Hallmark or UKTV Drama, because they're not included in the service) that we'll be able to watch! Oh, and apart from shows like Lost, because Sky don't have the on demand rights to that, either.

Ooh, the info screen in the top corner looks nice, plus it's in HD, which is nice. Oh dear, we've only actually 'got' the channels two of those programmes are on. Never mind, Sky themselves have said the service is there to showcase the best of their output, so presumably they've giving us a 'taster' of what is on some of the channels we don't subscribe to. That would be a good and clever way of showing us exactly what we're missing by not upgrading our package. Let's scroll down a bit!

Nicely, it's bothered to chug away overnight recording the HD versions of things we might like to see. That was nice of them. We quite fancy seeing what Casanova is like. Who knows, if we're impressed enough by what we see, we may choose to pay for Sky's two whole channels of HD movies...

Sounds interesting. Can't wait to see what it's like, especially as most of the programmes listed for the bog standard channels are quite rubbish. Which is why WE DIDN'T WANT TO WATCH THEM THE FIRST TIME AROUND. Hopefully, it'll be really, really good. That way we won't mind the fact that the 300gb drive in our HD box will only ever use just over half of its capacity, even though we've bloody well paid for the whole thing. Fingers crossed!

Oh, for fuck's sake. That's the whole thing rendered completely useless, then.


Number of programmes available to those who don't subscribe to the movie channels: A not very impressive six. Brian Wilson: Pet Sounds Live (Sky Arts), Gene Simmons Family Jewels (Biography), The Dresden Files (Sky One), Unlocking Da Vinci's Code (National Geographic Channel), Poetry: From Pete Doherty to Andrew Motion (Sky Arts), Corkscrewed (Sky One). All others require a Sky Movies subscription. Virgin Media's on-demand service has hundreds of shows, including repeats of Absolutely. Bah.

Number of those we'd want to watch: Maybe the Brian Wilson one, but only then if we're really bored.

Number of times our Sky HD box crashed while exploring the service: Twice. Hopefully fixed soon via a software upgrade, but still quite shoddy.

Overall score, then: 2/10. And that's rounding up to the nearest whole number, and even then being really generous.


Press services. Then '6'.

Change the top option to 'NO'. Then 'save new settings'.

This fixes the annoying 'record lots of rubbish programmes that you didn't want to record first time around, because they're rubbish, as well as tons of stuff you won't get to see unless you give Sky all of your money' bug, discovered earlier today.

(*'Bleeding' as in 'hell'.)

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