Tag Archives: freeview

[UK] Live TV on iPhone/iPod Touch is here!

Big news iPhone and iPod Touch users – you can now get live TV in the UK on your Apple devices.

Before I explain and you explode in excitement, you need to head straight over to http://iphone.tvcatchup.com to get the service.

The service is in beta so you only get some of the Freeview channels, but all the big ones are up on there.

I’ve just tried it now and it’s absolutely brilliant. The service is apparently optimised for 3G and Wi-Fi, but I’ve just ran it through on Wi-Fi and it streams in harmony. I’m on a 2MB connection here and it loads up really quickly, and hasn’t buffered once in the last 15 minutes. Perfect!

This is another brilliant addition to the TVCatchup service. Perfect if you’re in need of some TV and you aren’t at home.

Great work TVC, I’m really looking forward to the final version, but for now the beta is way more than I need!

A little legal note: Remember you need a UK TV license to watch TV while it is being broadcast. For your own legal safety, make sure your license is up to date before using the service. Thanks!

TVCatchup.com – Watch live freeview TV online for free!

I just randomly found a fantastic free service. It’s called TVCatchup – bit of an odd name for a service that isn’t a catchup service. EDIT: One of the moderators has let me know that they are planning to add in recording capabilites in the future – looking forward to that.

It allows you to stream all of the freeview channels available in the UK for free. You can watch every free-to-air channel online, using the helpful online service. It even has a simple but useful EPG that runs in your web browser.

The service, predictably, is only for use in the UK. However, it works anywhere in the UK that can get a broadband connection, so if you’re in an area where Freeview/digital signal is poor, this service is a godsend! If you don’t have a TV license, it’s probably a bad idea to use the site, too. TVCatchup has said it will not actually police this.

You simply sign up for a free account and you’re off. Watch whatever channel you want whenever you want. The only thing you have to be careful of is your bandwidth limit – this will quickly chew up your bandwidth – so if you’re on a tight limit, I wouldn’t recommend prolonged viewing.

There is a short advertisement when you start a channel, but as far as I know that is all (with exception to adverts shown on TV channels).

I think it only works on some ISPs. Me, being on Tiscali (don’t ask why), miraculously it works. The service will tell you on signup if your ISP is not supported. TVC has told me that it is peered with all ISPs – I’m not totally sure what this means, but presumably there are few (if any) ISPs that actively block usage of TVCatchup.

This really is a fantastic service. I can now get all the channels I don’t get on Freeview, online. If you want to see for yourself, get a free account at www.tvcatchup.com.

Is the computer taking over conventional TV?

Every time I boot up my laptop TV tuner or go to iPlayer or the likes, it always makes me think. Is TV on your PC taking over normal TV?

I think it is. With a computer, you can now basically watch a programme whenever you want to. BBC’s iPlayer gives you 7 days to watch a program, the same goes for many others, and Five provides TV shows for several months now.

Watching live TV on your PC is also very cheap now. You can get a Freeview USB dongle for a laptop or PC now for around £20 and TV cards don’t cost a bomb either. Windows Media Center is perfect for watching TV on your PC and comes free with Vista Home Premium and Ultimate. You can even use your computer as a PVR thanks to programs such as Windows Media Center, whereas a set top PVR for your TV is costing you sometimes a couple of hundred pounds.

It seems so much better value to use a computer for your TV nowadays. 

Do you think TV on your PC is overtaking conventional television?