By Sahil Patel
Roku will soon power an internet-TV service being developed by Sky Deutschland, one of the largest TV providers in Germany and Austria.
Similar to what Sony, Dish Network, and Verizon are planning to do in the US, Sky Deutschland is prepping a web-based TV service for those who don’t subscribe to its traditional cable package. The service, called Sky Online, will roll out in the coming months, and will be available through the Sky Online TV Box.
Per this deal, Roku will power streaming for the set-top box, which will also offer access to Snap, an on-demand library of films and TV shows from Sky.
This makes Sky Deutschland the second international pay-TV provider to make use of the “Roku Powered” program, which licenses Roku’s streaming technology to international pay-TV companies that want to launch web-based video services. Launched by Roku in September, the company’s first partner in the program was British Sky Broadcasting, a sister company of Sky Deutschland via Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox.
In addition to online TV and VOD from Sky, the Sky Online TV Box will also offer streaming apps from the Roku library.
While sister companies right now, British Sky Broadcasting is in the process of acquiring a majority stake in Sky Deutschland — and Sky Italia — from 21st Century Fox. Once completed, the merger will create Sky Europe, the largest pay-TV provider in Europe.
BSkyB, along with 21st Century Fox, is also a major investor in Roku.