The investigation under the 1998 Competition Act follows a complaint made by BT that Sky is making wholesale supply of the two channels to BT’s YouView platform conditional on BT wholesaling BT Sport channels to Sky for retail on Sky’s satellite platform. The telco says this is an abuse of dominance.
In a statement a spokesman for BSkyB said: “Sky considers BT’s latest complaint to be entirely without merit. We look forward to engaging constructively with Ofcom.”
Following a request from BT, the regular says it plans to make a decision on interim measures by July.
Tension between BT and BSkyB has reached new levels after the telco announced it would give away its new BT Sport suite of channels to customers of its broadband service; Sky has responded by reducing the price of its broadband service to Sky Sports customers.
In the process of launching BT Sport 1 and BT Sport 2, the telco its dropping the DTT feeds of Sky Sports 1 and 2, which has served both its own BT Vision households and those of Top Up TV. This means that Sky Sports will need to be fed over IPTV to customers requesting the two established channels.
Last August, BSkyB has won its appeal over the amount it can charge rival platforms for the premium sports channels at £17.14 for the two-channel bundle, some 10% less than set by the regulator.