The announcement of the sports channel probably puts the retention of the Eir/BT Sports Channels back onto Virgin Media off to bed. But with only football & rugby rights they have announced so far for subscribers of this channel & free to air viewers; what else have they got to show for it to make it's presence worthwhile. Acquiring sports rights here with this channel now in this market from August 30th will make the intention of nabbing sports rights very watered down for subscribers in the future.
People in rural Ireland who live in farmhouses, small villages and remote areas of the country alike probably cannot ever get any access to this new channel at all if Virgin Media were offering it to the Irish public as part of a VM subscription. Most of rural Ireland only get proper access to foreign sports on TV via Sky/BT and FreeSports on FTA Satellite because, apart from Saorview, it is by far the most reliable form of TV signal here in this country. If they don't want Sports with their TV; Saorview is only option for Irish channels.
What happens in a scenario when only one provider here only gets access to one set of sports rights only available to a certain section of the population while alienating the rest of the country in doing so. This is what VM have done here in setting up this new channel for their subscribers. They are the only perpetrators here in beginning to worsen a trend among many sports broadcasters & subscribers based here in Ireland by giving themselves an unfair advantage with the potential of alienating many parts of the country who want to pay for sports access through other legal means. I know the amount of new football rights on this new channel is quite substantial meaning a lot of games to their new viewers. But large parts of the country won't be able to access these sports at all unless they have a VM subscription in their possession.
VM last year alienated large portions of their subscribers in removing access to the Eir/BT Sports pack on their service a long time ago. The amount of negative publicity they got from those affected by the move was quite nasty if you look at online social media. How many of those customers would actually want to return to VM if they have this new channel included as part of their portfolio? They have also had other problems as well with the Horizon box having the worst ever usability performance from TV subscription customers in Ireland, they have one of the worst customer service reputations in this country and also their broadband is not too good either with having their customers broadband speeds being throttled on services like Netflix.
This sport channel being included for their customers will become a big PR disaster for Virgin. I won't be one of those people who will give sympathy once they go out of this country once and for all. They are a joke since they had overtook the cable operations from UPC in Ireland.
And have a look & see this as well.
VM Ireland apparently have no plans to increase their coverage when they announced this stuff today
And again; no plans to have their new main channel in HD on Saorview.
Last edited by bkman1990 on 28 June 2018 5:05pm - 5 times in total