Freeview TV and Freeview PLAY explained

Freeview TV

Freeview TV and Subscriptions

There is a large number of subscription and streaming TV services in the UK. Netflix, Amazon Prime, Virgin, Sky, BT to name just a few. Everywhere you turn, there’s a new provider offering another subscription service – but more and more viewers are cutting back on large TV packages and opting for cheaper subscription packages and Freeview.

We’ve all heard of Freeview TV…

Freeview is the name you see on the packaging of every TV in your local supermarket or electronics store, but what does it really mean? Can something really be free? And if it is, is it just free because nobody wants it – or nobody is prepared to pay for it?

Firstly, let’s get the technicalities out of the way: to get Freeview TV, you need an aerial and a valid TV licence. That’s all you need. We’ll tackle Freeview Play in a minute.

Freeview really is totally and completely 100% free. No subscription or licence or anything. Nothing to pay, ever.

Freeview TV

Which channels are included with Freeview TV?

BBC One, Two and Four in HD
ITV (STV in Scotland), available on +1 and in HD
Channel 4 (S4C in Wales) available on +1 and in HD
Channel 5, available on +1 and in HD
4Seven in HD
More4, Film4 and E4, available on +1
ITV2, ITV3, ITV4 and ITVBe, available on +1
5 STAR and 5USA, available on +1
Quest and Quest Red, available on +1
CBS Reality, Action and Drama, available on +1
Dave and Dave Ja Vu (+1 channel)
QVC and QVC Beauty in HD
QVC Style
True Crime, True Entertainment and True Movies
UKTV Really, Yesterday, Drama and Home
Food Network
Travel Channel
Vintage TV

Movie channels including movies4men, Horror Channel and Talking Pictures TV
Music channels including 4Music, Sony Music, VIVA and Keep It Country
Shopping channels including Ideal World, Gems TV, The Store and TJC
News and current affairs; BBC News in HD, BBC Parliament, Sky News, and RT (Russia Today) in HD.
Children’s TV; CBBC and CBeebies, both in HD, CITV, Pop, Tiny Pop and Pop Max, and Ketchup TV.

Freeview also has various subscription-only channels, including Racing UK and six adult channels.

Freeview Play

What is Freeview Play?

Freeview Play is basically another version of Freeview where you also get Live TV alongside catch-up content. You need an aerial and internet connection to receive it, along with a Freeview Play box. At present, these range from about £35 and upwards.

Freeview Play gives you the facility to scroll back seven days on the TV guide and watch whatever you’ve missed. Most other systems only allow you to scroll forward.

There are currently approximately 70 channels along with another 15 HD channels on Freeview Play. A Freeview Play box also supports apps such as Netflix, Amazon Video and BBC Sport – so you can expand your TV and movie repertoire if you fancy spending some of your hard-earned cash.

TV sets with Freeview Play built-in now make up 60% of all smart TV sales, and this is increasing all the time.

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