Sky needs shake-up to keep up in new digital world, tech expect says as cricket rights go to Spark Sport

Sky TV has taken a knock when it comes to losing some of its cricket coverage, with tech expert Paul Brislen saying there will be a lot of meetings behind closed doors on how they can keep up in the new digital world.

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Tech expert Paul Brislen talked about what to expect after Spark Sport gaining New Zealand cricket coverage rights from Sky TV. Source: Breakfast

Yesterday, Spark Sport confirmed it had gained broadcast rights to some cricket matches, that previously sat with Sky. Along with free-to-air partner TVNZ, Spark has won the rights to stream international cricket played in New Zealand, including all Black Caps and White Ferns matches, for six years.

It's another blow for Sky TV, having already lost the Rugby World Cup rights - also to Spark Sport.

Mr Brislen told TVNZ1's Breakfast this morning Sky was "in a difficult spot".

"This digital disruption has come to newspapers, it's come to television, now it's come to pay TV as well. That's something they're going to have to grapple with," he said.

"I think the new senior leadership team there, the new CEO, new direction that they're taking in the company - it has to put digital first, it has to try and win on the ground."

Mr Brislen said Sky would have to adjust their business model and expected "a lot of closed door meetings".

But Sky wasn't the only one having to adapt. Mr Brislen said there would also be anxiety from customers navigating the new technological age - many who will be signing up to multiple providers.

In the long term competition is good for sport in New Zealand and its fans, but in the short term he expected some teething issues with the technology running smoothly and people having to install the equipment to do so - just as they did for satellite television.

"In the short term there's probably a little bit of pain while you figure out who's got which games and where you've got to watch them and you have to buy two services now, and all the rest of that jazz.

"You have to upgrade, I'm sorry, it's the tech world, it's the way we do it."

Sky has since announced it has secured a deal with the International Cricket Council to screen both men's and women's international tournaments, including T20 and 50-over World Cups.