Some time ago I mentioned that I was in the process of working out how to use Sky Mobile to get Sky Sports on my TV. The process isn’t that complicated, but it does involve jailbreaking your iPhone or iPad, and buying an AV cable.
Basically the gist of it is this. Sky’s iPhone app costs £8 a month, but includes live streams of Sky Sports 1, 2, 3 and 4, Sky News, Sky Sports News, At the Races and ESPN. Pretty good value when you think that a regular TV subscription for that lot would run to over £40 and tie you in for at least a year. The iPad setup is similar, but omits ESPN and At the Races, and costs a slightly less bargainous £35 a month (Sky do often do deals though).
The streams are nice and reliable and really high quality over wi-fi. Wouldn’t it be nice, then, to be able to hook your iPhone up to a TV and watch the content on the big screen? It would, but Sky – not being stupid – aren’t about to let you use an £8 a month app to replace a £40 a month satellite TV subscription. Plug in your iPhone AV cable and there’ll be no picture on your telly. Not ideal.
Once again though, jailbreaking saves the day. Once you’ve de-Appled your phone with a bit of Greenpois0n magic, you’ll be able to install an app called TVOut2 from Cydia. It’s tiny, takes up virtually no room and can easily be set to activate only when an AV cable is plugged in. And guess what. It allows Sky Mobile to be output to a TV. There’s no complex configuration, no jiggery pokery with settings. Just plug in the cable, turn the TV to the right input and fire up the Sky Mobile app. The output isn’t HD, but then neither is the stream, so that’s no bad thing. In terms of quality, I’d say it’s about on a par with a good 480p YouTube stream. Maybe slightly better. Perfectly watchable on my 40 inch TV from about eight feet away. With a fast internet connection and a nearby wireless router the connection is perfectly stable. I reckon I get a glitch in the stream about once every two hours.
So there you go. For £8 a month, a quick jailbreak and a £10 AV cable off eBay (no need to stick to the official, expensive Apple cable) you can enjoy live streaming Sky Sports on your big screen TV. Not bad, eh?