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Sky+ HD upgrades with Smart Series Link and Suggestions

Matt Breen Seth Barton
21 Aug 2014
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More handy updates to your to Sky+ HD box

Today Sky rolled out another update to its Sky+HD set top box programme guide. The update includes programming suggestions, improved scheduling supporting season-to-season recording, better movie presentation and better remote control support. This follows on from its Sky+ HD EPG refresh back in March.

The lead feature is the new Suggestions which provides tailored programming suggestions based on the recordings and downloads that you've made recently. It makes suggestions from both over-the-air and on-demand programming. It looks similar to the long-running TiVo system that Virgin Media use, though it's entirely automated, while TiVo also lets like or dislike specific content if desired. With iPlayer so well integrated into Sky+ it should also take recommendations from that, something the TiVo box doesn't do when watching iPlayer through the app.

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Sky has fixed a long-running bugbear with recording multiple seasons. The update adds Smart Series Link, by which the next season of a recorded show is automatically recorded when it starts. The TiVo box's recording options have long supported ongoing recordings of this type, so it's good to see it on Sky+ too.

Sky Movies and the Sky Store now both have DVD cover art, so you can more easily browse and assess your movie options. While the HDMI output now supports HDMI-CEC, so that turning on your Sky+ box via the remote will also turn on your TV from standby and switch it to the correct HDMI input (presuming your TV supports HDMI-CEC, which most do).

Other improvements include a new sports tile on the homepage showing all live sports currently on, easier choice between SD and HD options when downloading on-demand content, simpler card pairing to get new viewing cards up-and-running, plus numerous interface tweaks.

The new EPG enhancments will start rolling out today, but could take a while to filter through to everyone. Customers should connect there boxes to the internet to get the most from the new features, with the update being complete by winter to all 8m Sky+HD customers.

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