Eir has unveiled its new TV service, signing up with Apple to be the first TV provider in the world to use the Apple TV 4K device as its sole set-top box.
The telecommunications company said the partnership with Apple would give customers access to the Eir live TV service, which includes HD as standard, a one-year subscription to Apple TV+ from November 1st, and access to hundreds of apps such as RTÉ Player, Now TV, Netflix, YouTube and Amazon Prime Video. Sports packages include Eir Sport 1 and 2, and Virgin Media Sport.
But those who want to sign up to the service will have to be in an area that is served by Eir’s fibre broadband service. Eir said around 80 per cent of households can access the service, and it has about 297,000 fibre broadband customers.
The service will cost €20 a month for existing Eir customers, with six months discounted to €15, and as part of a fibre broadband bundle to new customers for €80 a month, with a promotional price of €50 for the first six months.
"I think it was fundamentally important that we had a partner that shared the same vision for delivering the kind of TV product that we wanted to deliver," Eir's managing director of marketing Susan Brady said. "Apple has massive ambitions in this space. And it's obviously spending a lot of money both on the hardware and on the content strategy. It was really important for us that we had a partner that was very much focused on the future ways in which people were going to consume entertainment and content."
The service includes seven-day catch-up, the ability to pause and rewind live TV, and cloud recording on up to 500 programmes. Multi-room viewing can be added for €10, with the ability to add up to three Apple TV boxes to the service, and watch five streams of live TV simultaneously. Eir is also launching an Eir TV app for both TV and broadband customers.
It also means an end of sorts for Eir’s existing TV service Eir Vision – at least when it comes to new customers. All new customers will be signed up to Eir TV, and existing Eir Vision subscribers who want to switch to the new Eir TV offering can do so. But Ms Brady said customers who wanted to keep Eir Vision would not be forced on to the new platform.
“They can keep their Eir Vision boxes and we will probably continue to maintain that platform for the next few years,” she said. “There are certain people that will probably want to continue with that product and maybe not want to be the first to jump into the Apple TV product.”
Eir also launched a new Eir Fibre box, which brings speeds of up to 1 Gigabit for broadband customers.