Dear Sky Bosses,
I'm writing this open letter to you as I feel others need to know precisely how aggrieved I am with your latest money making scheme.
Let me first of all explain my situation. I am a carer for my mother, who is in her 80's. I have no income and so any expenditures have to be justified. Frankly just paying your ever increasing subscription charges has been difficult enough. Your latest little tactic I find both indefensible and deceitful.
Until the 29th July I was able to come upstairs to my Xbox 360 and use your Sky Go service to catch up on such shows as True Blood, Ray Donovan, Banshee and Penny Dreadful – all shows I was not able to watch downstairs as my mother would not enjoy having to sit through them.
Now I find that you have removed my access to Sky Go via the Xbox, unless I pay you an extra £5 a month for Sky Go Extra. This leaves me without the access I need and, as I stated above, it is difficult enough affording your already expensive subscription, I cannot pay you more for a service I have already been paying for. Needless to say your subscribers will not be seeing a reduction in our subscriptions for this withdrawal of service, that would be expecting too much.
When I questioned your Twitter support team about this issue I was told “I can appreciate that the changes to Sky Go on Xbox can cause frustration, and want to clear up why this decision has been made. This decision has been taken to allow us to provide the best service possible with Sky Go on Xbox, as well as to protect the content within Sky Go. If you're a Sky Multiscreen subscriber, you can get Sky Go Extra at no extra cost.”
Frustration does not enter into it. I am bloody disgusted and furious with your company. I cannot afford Sky Multiscreen, if I could I would not need Sky Go anyway, I'd have the second box upstairs. I do not need the four device limit Sky Go Extra offers, I needed only one – which you have now denied me.
As to the lie, and it is a lie as it is nonsensical, that this move protects the content within Sky Go, you must think we are idiots. How can it possibly be intended to protect content when any such added protection is negated by simply paying you your extra five pounds of flesh to regain the same access?
Further to this, I would not pay this £5 a month extra on the grounds the picture quality via the Xbox is appalling. As others have noted on your own forums, the stream constantly appears to be below that which is required for a high quality image. It's not like you even offered HD streams, unlike other providers manage without expecting their viewers to cough up extra money. The quality was sufficient to catch up on missed shows, no more, and it was not worth paying extra for. No, before you suggest it, this has nothing to do with my internet connection - that's way more than sufficient for HD streams from the likes of the BBC's iPlayer, this is down to your company putting out at substandard bandwidths. Again, one check of your own forums will confirm this issue plagues your customers.
It's not like your satellite service is exactly reliable, either. When we had the recent storms, and as happens whenever we get heavy rain, our signal disappeared completely. This left us with no option but to use the Xbox's internet based stream to fall back on – something else you are therefore denying your paying customers.
There is no way you will get another penny out of me for something I was already entitled to until you realised you could milk the customer cash cow a bit more vigorously. I am disgusted by this move, as are many others judging by the numerous comments on your own user forums.
I will be seriously considering cancelling my subscription and going to Virgin. I've been with you for well over twenty years yet this is the way in which my loyalty is rewarded? It appears like you'll bait the hook, as currently where new subscribers get a Samsung tablet, but once we're caught you can treat us like dirt, nothing more than wallets to plunder. It's not good enough.
Shoddy, Sky, very shoddy.
A furious customer