I Want My Free TV
By Jesse Freund

(Business 2.0) – The good news: This could be a banner year for British Sky Broadcasting, the largest U.K. pay-TV provider. When BSkyB announces 2004 earnings on Aug. 4, net income should be up 249 percent, to £275 million ($503 million). Now the bad: The battle to convert Britain's 10 million analog customers to digital TV is getting cutthroat. After Freeview, an over-the-air digital TV service, began adding subscribers six times faster than BSkyB, the satellite company announced plans to launch its own free service later this year. The gambit could backfire, however, if BSkyB can't persuade enough of its free subscribers to pay for additional premium services.