Comcast-owned Sky launches branded smart TVs

Sky, a European satellite TV operator owned by Comcast, today introduced Sky Glass, its new line of branded smart TVs designed to be paired with its streaming TV product.

Sky Glass, which was designed in partnership with Map Project Office and works with the Sky Q TV service, comes in three sizes (43-, 55- and 65-inch) and five colors with matching remotes and customizable speakers. It features a “4K Ultra HD Quantum Dot” and supports HLG, HDR10 and Dolby Vision. The TV includes far field voice and Glance Motion Technology so users can say “Hello Sky” or walk past to have the TV turn on, and it supports apps from Sky, BBC iPlayer, Netflix, Disney+, ITV Hub, All4, Spotify, Peloton, PlayWorks and others.

Sky Glass is being sold through payment plans that start at £13 per month for Sky TV customers with channel packages including Sky Ultimate TV for £26. The company said that for £4 more a month customers can increase the size of the TV to a 55-inch, or £8 more for a 65-inch.

Sky Glass will be available in the U.K. starting October 18 and the rest of Sky’s European markets beginning in 2022.

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“Sky Glass is the streaming TV with Sky inside, providing the total integration of hardware, software and content. Built on over 30 years of understanding what our customers want, this is a TV that only Sky could make. We believe this is the smartest TV available, and that customers will love it,” said Sky CEO Dana Strong during a launch event for the device.

Sky Glass is being billed a collaboration between Sky and Comcast and the companies said the device is using the same operating system. The companies are planning to license Sky Glass and the platform to other TV providers and announced Foxtel Group in Australia as its first Sky Glass syndication partner. Sky Glass in Australian contain both Foxtel and third-party content.

Sky and Comcast next year are planning to build a 4K smart camera into Sky Glass to add video chat, online gaming, exercise and shared entertainment features.

Sky Glass arrives at an interesting time for Comcast, which appears to be closer than ever to launching its own line of smart TVs. Last month Protocol found a temporary website for Comcast’s potential XClass smart TVs, which will come in 43- and 50-inch 4K UHD models manufactured by Hisense and will include voice remotes.

Comcast has confirmed its interest in using smart TVs to expand its X1 video platform beyond its cable footprint.