BT Sport is to be made available via Google’s Chromecast, making BT the second UK broadcaster to place its content on the dongle, along with the BBC’s iPlayer app.
Although the channels will only be available to BT’s broadband customers, the move is a major boost for Chromecast, which went on sale in the UK last month at a price of £30, but has been criticised for its limited range of content.
From an advertising point of view, wide adoption of the device could lead to audiences watching more internet videos and catch-up TV, rather than live TV, which has long been a major source of revenue for organisations.
The move is an interesting one on BT's part, as Chromecast is competing with several other internet streaming devices, including YouView - which is backed by BT itself, as well as TalkTalk and free-to-air broadcasters.
Another key rival is Sky's Now TV service, which initially indicates that Sky would not offer content for the device, though the fact that both BBC and BT have stakes in rival streaming services yet are still supporting Chromecast suggests that the idea of Sky joining the party is not out of the question.
BT has yet to confirm publicly when the roll-out will take place, but John Petter, the head of BT’s consumer division, assured BT Sport customers that only they would have access to the channel's content.
It is the latest development in the world of online TV streaming, after the seven YouView shareholders last week committed to funding the platform for at least the next five years.
Under the arrangement, BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5, BT, TalkTalk and Arqiva will all remain equal shareholders and commit to promoting the future of connected free-to-air TV, as well as enabling an "upgrade path" to pay services.