Sky UK releases a motion-tracking webcam for TV watch parties

'Sky Live' also features body-tracking tech for motion control games.


UK broadcaster Sky has unveiled a webcam device called Sky Live designed to add features like watch parties with friends, fitness and gaming features, the company announced. It attaches magnetically to the top of the company's Sky Glass smart TVs via USB-C and HDMI, and supports motion tracking for games and workouts, along with video calls, group chats and more.

"Sky Live makes your TV much more than just a TV, by introducing new entertainment experiences for the heart of your home," said Sky global chief product officer Fraser Stirling in a statement. "Get active with motion control games, work out with body tracking technology, video call on the big screen and watch TV with loved ones – even from afar. And [with] our powerful Entertainment OS ecosystem, it will keep getting better with every update."

The 12-megapixel webcam looks a bit like a mini Xbox One Kinect, with a rectangular design and lens on the right. Video is captured at up to 4K with an ultrawide 106-degree field of view (equivalent to a 14mm lens in 35mm camera terms). It has a white status LED, four microphones on top and a privacy button that turns it off (but no privacy shutter). There's an auto-framing feature to keep you in the center of the shot, along with background noise suppression to ensure you're heard during noisy broadcasts.

A key feature pitched by Sky (owned by Comcast since 2018) is called "Watch Together," letting you do watch parties with up to 11 other households remotely. Friends' video feeds appear to the right of the main feed and it works with all live channels and Sky's own on-demand programs — but not Netflix or other third-party streaming services. Playback is supposed to be synchronized among all call participants, so you shouldn't hear your friends cheering before you actually see a goal scored.

On top of looking like one, Sky Live also acts like a Kinect. It comes with a Mvmnt fitness app offering 130 interactive workouts, with the motion control tech tracking and your form, reps and more. It also supports motion-controlled games like Fruit Ninja and an multiplayer version of Monopoly controlled with the TV's remote. You can make Zoom calls, with participants shown in full HD and centered in the frame thanks to the auto-tracking feature.

Sky Live requires a Sky Glass smart TV to work and costs £290 ($370) as a standalone purchase, £6 per month over 48 months, or £12 per month on a 24-month contract. Sky is also offering introductory discounts if purchased with a Smart Glass TV. Th latter, launched back in 2021, comes in 43-, 55- and 65-inch version and starts at around £14 per month.