SKY considering TV remote control apps

by PYB James | Dec 01, 2010

Sky TV have told a leading gadget web site that they would be keen to explore the possibility of developing applications which would allow tablets, iPads and smartphones to be used as remote controls for the Sky HD box.

Talking to Pocket-lint, Sky’s director of TV Product, Brian Lenz was keen to demonstrate the company’s openness to exploring new ways of enhancing sofa-surfing for its customers.

"I do think that smartphones, iPads, and tablets are actually going to bring new opportunities, not just in what you can do from a content presentation point of view, but in controlling your TV", he told Pocket-lint.

"A lot of the way we organise content is about getting the fewest button clicks between you and watching TV", Lenz also said.

"We are always doing a lot of testing on different types of remote controls, however the facts are that people still see the most natural way of controlling their TV is by moving their thumbs in a very small range".

He pointed out that the cornerstone of good service for TV viewers is simplicity, equally important he stressed are the way in which consumers access content and how they get there. Sky already has a popular iPhone app for customers which allows them to see the electronic programme guide (EPG) and set programmes to record wherever they are.

Lenz sees the recent advances in games controllers like the PlayStation Move and the Kinect, which use gesture-control applications as the kind of innovation that Sky needs to keep tabs on.

They are all very interesting, but in the end it's not clear whether that's the way people want to interact with their TV,” he said.

He also promised that customers being able to watch Sky TV on their tablets was “absolutely one of those things that we want to figure out."

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