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Essay by guido999University, Bachelor'sD-, November 2014

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Since its official launch in 1998, Sky digital has flourished, growing from 225,000 customers to 7 million in 2003 then 9.95 million in 2010 with 16,500 employees, Sky Digital stands as the UK's top pay television provider. Sky Digital is the brand name for British Sky Broadcasting's digital television service transmitted from Astra Satellites. BSkyB's analogue broadcast ended in 2001, so the service is now commonly marketed as Sky Digital, making it the world's first digital-only service provider. Sky digital also enables viewers to perform a wide variety of interactive tasks ranging from sending email, shopping, betting and banking (Sky, Key facts and Figures, 2010).


In 1983, Rupert Murdoch's News International set up Sky Channel, a European-based satellite-to- cable broadcaster providing a mix of English-language sports and entertainment programming to much of Europe's cable television systems. Sky Channel proved less than successful, however, generating under $20 million per year in advertising revenues, and by the mid-1980s Murdoch was already looking to evolve the Sky concept toward the newly emerging direct satellite broadcasting technology and to focus the television subsidiary on the British market. Satellite television represented a significant step in British television history. By law, broadcast television was restricted to just four channels the two license-fee backed BBC channels and two advertiser-supported channels, ITV and Channel 4. Cable television, meanwhile, was nonexistent in the United Kingdom (Sky, Key facts and Figures, 2010).

BSB, as it was known then, was established in 1988 and announced plans to begin broadcasting in mid-1989. Rather than making use of existing satellites, the company determined to build and launch its own satellites and to broadcast using a new technology, called D-MAC, to a Philips-designed receiver dish known as a "squarial." Technical...