Media regulator Ofcom has published a consultation into regulation of the pay TV industry which will determine whether Sky should be required to offer its Sky Sports 1 and 2 channels to other providers.
Designed to ensure fair competition the move follows up on a 2010 obligation on Sky to offer both channels at prices set by the regulator to Virgin Media, BT – recently extended to IPTV for BT, which is now being reviewed.
Ofcom is seeking to ensure broader availability of sport content on a greater variety of providers and devices, a market currently dominated by Sky which commands 75 per cent of the rights to live Premier League football and more than 80 per cent of market revenues.
In a statement Ofcom said: “Ofcom recognises that the pay TV sector is evolving rapidly and any assessment is affected by continuing developments in the market.
“In assessing whether regulation remains appropriate or whether it should be removed, Ofcom will take account of such developments, including the outcome of the next Premier League auction.
“Ofcom will consider responses to today's consultation and any further steps will be outlined in a second phase of the review in 2015.”