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BskyB is a multi-billion dollar, multi-national company with satellites in space and audience numbers in the hundreds of thousands. Why then does their new look portal site look rather tacky?
You know, I think the domain name www.sky.com hasnít always been the property of the Television company that we all know. I am fairly sure that an organisation in the Philippines once owned it, in fact, I do believe that some of the original ILoveYou virus emails pointed the victims back to a web account on Sky.com. I might be wrong, but I think Iíve been there! It just sounds so very unlikely that I donít have the strength to support my own convictions. Anyway, whatever the history of www.sky.com it is currently owned by the people who used to bring us four hours of Pokemon in a row.
Whatís wrong with the current look to Skyís webpage then?
The adverts are one gripe. Clearly BskyB isnít charging enough for its services and has decided that scraping up a few extra thousand pounds from some banners are worth the loss of space on their brand name site and subjecting possible customers to flickering, dancing images.
I am not keen on the layout of the page either. There are two chunky navigation bars down the left and the right. I would say that navigation strips each take up 25% of the space, leaving only 50% for the main content and the main content area still has adverts in it.
I donít think the navigation works very well either. On the top left youíll find the ubiquitous search engine box (LookSmart and Yahoo!) and I donít have any particular complaints with that. However, directly below youíll be tempted with some SkyBuyís, then and below that, a list of channels. At least, the header informs you that theyíre channels. Funny, I donít think ďSky MobileĒ is a TV Channel. Hey! Guess what! Iíve found a hidden advert.
If you keep on going down, scrolling your page, youíll at last get to a small collection of + boxes which will try and provide you with some useful information about their services. Do you know what I mean by an + box? Itís a small box with an + in the centre and you click on it to expand a menu - just like youíd use your Windows Navigator.
I have tried to use this portal to find out all sorts of different information on Sky and the services that they offer. I didnít learn my lesson the first time and went back to this page. I found myself going around in loops each time and I suspect part of the problem was the menu pointer getting confused as to where it was. Bad.
Really, the only advice I can give people is to bookmark the URLs that will take you straight to the pages which offer decent content and hope that they to donít succumb to the same problems as the portal page has.
(I donít like the colour scheme either: Blue and Yellow. For some reason it seems to remind me of a Foottie team struggling to avoid relegation.)