Sky Sports vs BT Sport – which is best for Premier League football?
This weekend marks the beginning of the Premier League 2013/14 season. There will be goals. There will be glory. There will be Jose Mourinho getting upset about a refereeing decision. But how are you going to watch it all?
If Match of the Day just isn’t enough, then you’re faced with a choice between paying for Sky Sports or its newly launched rival BT Sport. We look at which service offers the most games, the best value for money and whether their accompanying broadband services are up to scratch.
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Sky Sports has the most matches
No great shock in the pie chart above – Sky has more matches. This season, 158 Premier League football matches will be screened live across Sky Sports and BT Sport. Of these, 116 will be shown by Sky and 38 will be shown by BT Sport, giving Sky a 75% market share. Importantly, most BT games are being shown at 12.45pm on a Saturday instead of the Monday night or weekend evening games Sky will show.
In addition to Premier League matches, BT Sport has secured the rights for up to 25 FA Cup games per season, as well as games from Italy, Germany and other European leagues. Meanwhile, Sky Sports will screen 129 Champions League games, 90 Football League games, plus plenty of Scottish and Spanish fixtures too.
Sky Sports triumphs on price per match
If you’re interested in a pay TV subscription for Premier League matches, rather than movie channels, the Simpsons or any of the other extras, you’ll find Sky offers a cheaper deal per match. You’ll simply get more minutes of Premiership for every pound you spend.
Since BT has only 38 matches per year, its overall cost per game is £8.04. In comparison, Sky Sports costs just £4.50 per match if you don’t sign up for broadband at the same time. As any package with BT Sport will include broadband, a better comparison is with Sky’s cheapest TV and broadband bundle. With Sky’s ‘free’ 12 months unlimited broadband deal you pay another £14.50, which bumps the per match price up to £6. Still significantly cheaper than BT.
Depending on your drinking habits, it could be cheaper to the enjoy the match at a pub instead of at home.
Of course price per match doesn’t tell the whole story. The cheapest BT broadband and TV package that gives you access to all the Premiership games they offer will cost £305.40 for a year. On Sky, the cheapest broadband and TV package with all the football action costs more than double that, at £696 for a year.
What do you get for the extra cash? Apart from the extra games Sky gives you’ll also be signed up to Sky’s Entertainment package, which offers channels like Sky 1, Sky Atlantic and Sky Living.
Sky offers best broadband customer service
We ask Which? members on a bi-annual basis to rate their broadband provider across a number of factors including customer service, value for money and accuracy of bills.
For customer service, BT Broadband was awarded a middling three-star rating with one member remarking, “‘BT could be a great company if only they listened to customer complaints. After all communication is what they sell.”
Sky Broadband on the other hand scored four stars for customer service, receiving positive feedback like, “It is a truly unlimited, unmanaged service that offers very fair prices for Sky TV customers.”
Read our broadband deals page for the full verdict on BT, Sky and other broadband and pay TV services.
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