Sky Mobile 5G service to deploy in November fueled by Sky content

Sky Mobile 5G service
Sky Mobile is launching into what will be a crowded 5G field, but its Sky content could help it gain traction quickly

Sky Mobile 5G service will see a limited release by November, offering customers up to 40 GB of data per month for £66 ($82), including unlimited calls and texts, and unlimited mobile streaming of movies and TV shows on Sky apps.

There are, of course, lower tiers for less money – £42 ($52) for 1 GB of data and the same unlimited calls, text and Sky video – but, hey, go big or go home, right? Other plans include options for 4GB, 8GB and 20GB of data. And, subscribers can roll over unused data.

The Sky Mobile 5G service initially will be available in just a half-dozen cities, including London, Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Leeds and Slough, but will expand quickly by the end of 2019 to 20 additional markets. Sky Mobile – which has a mobile virtual network operator deal with O2 – plans to have the technology operating in 50 markets by the end of 2020.

5G technology is touted as being able to deliver faster speeds, more reliable connections and massive bandwidth. The technology is expected to deliver buffer-less video streaming and latency low enough that live sports delivered to mobile devices will be virtually lag free. 5G will offer download speeds up to 10x faster than 4G and up to 1 Gbps connections.

The Bottom line

Rolling out 5G service certainly would seem to set up Sky Mobile to steal some market share from established mobile operators in a crowded field that has become price dependent for differentiation.

But that opportunity likely will be short lived as other telecom companies deploy their own 5G solutions, potentially more quickly and to a broader market. Sky Mobile, after all, is dependent upon O2 being able to push its own 5G deployment out quickly.

But a big advantage Sky Mobile has is all of that content Sky offers. And, with Sky’s new Sky Studio play and the backing of Comcast – which will watch this mobile play very closely as it has its own mobile service in the wings just gaining speed – Sky Mobile does have a unique opportunity to flex its muscles with Millennials.

Stay tuned.

Jim O’Neill is Principal Analyst at Brightcove. You can follow him on Twitter @JimONeillMedia and on LinkedIn