Sky On Demand TV Advert Banned over FREE Broadband Conflict - ISPreview UK
BT has successfully caused one of Sky’s direct mailing adverts to be banned because it promoted the operators On Demand TV service alongside their “free broadband” product, which is capped via a 2GB usage allowance and thus “would significantly limit the amount of Catch Up content that could be downloaded“.

The promotion, which was headed “Brand new Sky Bundles … Award-winning TV that revolves around you from £21.50 a month“, touted a variety of Sky’s On Demand TV services (e.g. Sky Go, Catch Up TV etc.) and stated that an Internet connection was required. Some additional text then said “Get even more Add free broadband” and the small print noted that this option included a 2GB usage allowance, which was also qualified by saying that “a 30 minute show typically uses 0.5GB“.

As a result BT moaned to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) that the promotion was misleading because it did not make “sufficiently clear that taking the free broadband would significantly limit the amount of catch up TV content that customers could view“. Sky disagreed and said that the bundle also included some Catch Up content that was sent to the Sky boxes directly via satellite.
ASA Ruling (REF: A13-236328)

Although Sky said that it was not necessary for customers to connect their Sky box to broadband we noted the ad stated “Broadband connection required” and we understood that, to fully utilise the Catch Up TV service, consumers would need to have broadband and that without this they would be limited to the selected content only.

In this context we considered it was significant material information and that by choosing the “free broadband” offered would significantly limit the amount of Catch Up content that could be downloaded extra to the selected content provided by Sky, compared to those with a broadband package that had a download limit more suited to downloading TV programmes or films. We considered that the reference to “free broadband” should have been more prominently qualified with a reference to the fact it was a package with a 2 GB limit and therefore concluded that the ad was misleading
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As usual the advert was banned and Sky warned to ensure that qualifications around “free broadband” offers were sufficiently prominent in future.
thinkbroadband :: Sky has knuckles rapped for impact of catch-up TV on free broadband
One of the latest ASA rulings was against Sky and in particular its Original Bundle with Broadband Lite. The Lite product is the free broadband service that Sky TV customers are entitled to in LLU areas and has a minimal 2 GB usage allowance.

BT complained about an advert, where Sky was highlighting the catch up TV potential of its bundle, and while they did qualify IPTV based catch up in the small print i.e. a 30 minute show would use 0.5 GB of data, the ASA has ruled that free usage allowance on the free product would 'significantly limit the amount of Catch Up content that could be downloaded extra to the selected content provided by Sky'.

Given the superlatives used in the current wave of 4G advertising, it can only be a matter of time before similar complaints are raised about the expectations the adverts are setting for what you can actually do. Or to put it another way, with Netflix now supporting HD films, one movie is likely to use up your whole months usage allowance, unless you are paying for a 8GB or higher allowance.