BT TV Hikes Prices Again: Netflix, NOW And Sports Go Up

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BT TV, the TV platform offered by BT to its broadband customers, has raised its prices yet again this week, increasing the monthly costs of all of its TV bundles, which include streaming services and premium channels along with the BT TV Pro set-top box.

This latest price increase comes less than three months after BT already increased the prices of these same TV bundles.

BT’s TV bundles include subscriptions to popular streaming services and sports, and all come with BT’s 4K Youview recorder box, which also lets you watch Freeview without an aerial.

With this most recent price rise, some of BT’s TV bundles have gone up by £2 (per month), while others have gone up by £1/month (see full details below).

But it’s worth noting that Netflix and Sky’s NOW, which make up the core of BT’s Entertainment TV plan – haven’t raised their prices in recent months.

Therefore, this recent increase seems to come solely from BT’s end, even though these bundles are often discounted (up until a few days ago, there was a special offer that cut some of these bundles to just £10/month).

BT TV and Broadband bundles collage

So, for example, BT’s Entertainment Bundle offers the “Basic” Netflix subscription, Sky’s NOW Entertainment (which includes Sky Atlantic) membership, and the 4K Pro box.

It used to cost £16/month when it first launched in 2021, then £17, then £18, and now… £20/month. 

Taking the December 2022 price increase into consideration, some of the TV bundles – such as the Entertainment Pack – have gone up by £3/month (from £17/m to £20/m) – almost 18% – in as little as three months.

At these prices, you’re now paying MORE than you would have by subscribing to some of these services (Netflix and NOW) directly, unless you take into account the 4K Pro Box (which is a loan, not a purchase).

Also, remember that all the bundles come with a 24-month contract, so over the course of the full two years, Cord Cutting would, in almost every case, come out cheaper.

BT’s TV Platform Explained

BT has been bundling Netflix into its TV packages since 2021, shortly after launching its 4K BT TV Box Pro box. In addition, it lets you add Sky’s NOW streaming memberships, or choose sports add-ons.

BT TV Boxes
BT TV’s Boxes

The box is a 4K/HDR YouView-based device with streaming apps and plenty of storage for Freeview recordings.

It supports Dolby Atmos sound, has 4 tuners (so you can record up to 3 shows on separate channels and watch a fourth), 1TB of storage, a Bluetooth remote and WiFi/Ethernet connectivity.

The BT TV Box Pro also has a long list of supported streaming apps – Netflix, Amazon’s Prime Video, NOW, BT Sport, BT Player, Milkshake and more, as well as all the standard catch-up streaming apps – BBC iPlayer, ITVX, All4, My5, UKTV Play, S4C, STV Player and BBC Sounds. 

Last year, the box got upgraded with a new ‘Internet Mode’ – which finally lets you watch some Freeview channels without an aerial.

BT TV Internet Mode official jpg

This can make BT’s bundles a tempting offer for those who can’t use an aerial (due to bad reception), and is in direct competition with Sky’s standalone Stream box, and Virgin Media’s Stream Box – both of which also let you stream Freeview channels via broadband.

For those who want to watch in additional rooms – BT offers the BT TV Mini Box, which also includes streaming apps and the ability to stream Freeview channels via broadband – but it doesn’t have any recording capabilities.

BT’s “Flexible” TV packages are attached to BT’s broadband plans (you can’t get BT TV on its own, except for BT Sport, which is also available as a monthly pass and on Sky and Virgin Media). 

The BT TV packages, along with BT’s broadband, come with a 24-months contract – so in practice, they’re not very “flexible” – not as flexible as standard streaming services, at least.

BT TV Entertainment Pack collage

But the flexible part does come from being able to change your TV package every 30 days – switch from Entertainment to Sports, cancel one and add another, or just get the VIP package which includes everything (but you can’t cancel the TV part altogether, until your contract is up).

In addition to seamlessly switching between packages, customers can also attach stand-alone add-ons to their packages – such as more of Sky’s NOW streaming plans, Amazon’s Prime Video, and more – or upgrade to Netflix’s higher tiers (to get 4K content, for example).

BT TV Bundles – New 2023 Pricing

As with so many other companies these days (Sky is raising prices, and Virgin Media is raising prices), BT also increased its TV prices this month.

All of BT’s TV plans are available to both new and existing customers – but either way, you must also be subscribed to BT’s broadband, and you can’t take any of the TV packages without it.

Note that all packages include a one-time £39.99 upfront fee, and come with a 24-month contract.

It’s also important to note that BT TV customers who are already under a TV contract won’t be affected directly by these price increases – unless they make a change to one of their TV plans, or their contract renews (but existing customers will face the annual, CPI-based price increase).

Entertainment: £20 per month 

The price of this plan was increased to £18/month in December 2022 – and now it has gone up to £20/month.

The “Entertainment Package” includes:

  • Sky’s streaming service – NOW – with its Entertainment Membership, which includes Sky’s TV channels such as Sky Atlantic and Sky Max. 
  • Netflix’s Basic Plan – This plan lets you watch on one device at a time, with 720p picture quality. Note that this isn’t Netflix’s Basic with Ads tier – so you won’t be seeing adverts.
  • The AMC Channel, which is exclusive to BT TV and includes American shows and films.
  • The Discovery Channel (the linear channel – not Discovery+)
  • The BT TV 4K Pro Box
Netflix on TV
Photo: Deposit Photos

If you subscribe directly, the Basic Netflix plan normally costs £6.99/month, and the NOW Entertainment membership costs £9.99/month if you buy it directly – so £16.98/month in total.

Furthermore, Netflix recently launched its ad-supported tier, which costs £4.99/month – so if you’re willing to watch adverts, you’ll pay even less.

So, at the new price of £20/month, not only are you not saving money with the BT Entertainment Package – you’re actually paying more, unless you take into account the BT TV Pro 4K box (along with AMC and Discovery).

A similar Freeview recorder, which also includes streaming apps, like the Humax Aura (see our review), costs around £250. So you’re basically getting an expensive recorder/streaming box for “free” (but you have to give it back if you leave BT).

Sport: £18 per month

The price of this plan went up to £17/month in December 2022 – and is now £18/month.

BT Sport mic official
BT Sport (Photo: BT)

The plan includes:

  • All 4 BT Sport channels – with Premier League games and every UEFA Champions League match.
  • Discovery+ / Eurosport (which is now free for BT Sport subscribers, but there’s no app on the BT box yet!).
  • The AMC Channel
  • The BT TV 4K Pro Box

Note that this package doesn’t include Netflix. On its own (on the standalone monthly pass) – BT Sport (which will soon transform into TNT Sports) costs £29.99/month (and it also includes Discovery+).

So, with sports, this bundle is still better priced than getting BT Sport as a standalone service – but, remember that you’re signing up for 24 months, and must also get BT’s broadband. Furthermore, BT Sport is sometimes cheaper on other platforms.

Big Entertainment: £30 per month

The price of this bundle went up to £28/month in December 2022 – and is now £30/month.

It includes:

  • Sky’s NOW Entertainment Membership
  • Sky’s NOW Cinema Membership – which includes Sky’s 11 Cinema Channel and on-demand films.
  • Netflix’s Basic Plan
  • The AMC Channel
  • The Discovery Channel (the linear channel – not Discovery+)
  • The BT TV 4K Pro Box

NOW TV devices dragon

Without BT, the streaming services in this plan cost £26.97/month (and often less, when you take into consideration limited-time NOW offers).

Big Sport: £43 per month

The price went up to £42/month in December 2022, and is now £43/month.

It includes:

  • Sky’s NOW Sports Membership – Includes all 11 Sky Sports channels and some on-demand sports content.
  • All 4 BT Sport Channels
  • Discovery+ / Eurosport (which is now free for BT Sport subscribers, but there’s no app on the BT box yet!).
  • The AMC Channel
  • The BT TV 4K Pro Box

This bundle doesn’t include Netflix. On its own (NOW Sports + BT Sport monthly pass), it would cost £64.98/month (though NOW Sports is currently discounted for a limited time if you sign up directly).

As with the Sport bundle, this one is cheaper than getting the two services on their own, at least in full price – but you’re signing up for a 24 months contract, and must remain with BT’s broadband.

VIP: £76 per month 

The price of this plan went up to £75/month in December 2022 – and is now £76/month.

It includes:

  • Sky’s NOW Sports Membership
  • 4 BT Sport Channels
  • Discovery+ / Eurosport (which is now free for BT Sport subscribers, but there’s no app on the BT box yet!).
  • The AMC Channel
  • Sky’s NOW Entertainment
  • Sky’s NOW Cinema
  • Netflix’s Standard Plan (with Full HD content, and up to 2 screens at the same time).
  • The BT TV 4K Pro Box

On its own, this collection would cost £95.95/month.

Since this bundle includes sports, then – thanks to that – it’s somewhat cheaper than getting all these services on their own – but remember the long-term contract, and the fact that you have to stay with BT Broadband (AND it’ll still be cheaper to just take the sports, and sign up for Netflix and NOW directly).

Some discounted bundles are available for new customers who take BT Broadband along with BT’s TV plans – but they’re as good as the TV offers we saw last month (though those will probably return at some point in the future).

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