RIP TV Antennas: How To Livestream All Free-To-Air Television

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With free-to-air TV fighting for relevance in the face of streaming services, digital TV service Freeview has launched streaming access to a all free-to-air TV (other than select sports and other exclusive rights content) over the web.

Freeview launched the new FV service over the web at midnight. It brings together live streams and catch-up services from more than 20 FTA TV channels on a Mac or PC. Freeview says you can use any current browser to access the free FV website.

To access the service, go to the Freeview web site and click on the "Watch TV" link.

As well as the streaming content, there's a TV guide for all FTA channels and a program recommendation tool to help you find content of interest.

Freeview CEO Liz Ross says “Aussies have completely free access to more than 10,000 programs with Freeview. There are no subscription fees, it’s available wherever you are, on whichever device you’re on and at whatever time you want to watch TV".

As well as the website, there are mobile apps for Android and iOS.

With TV shifting from a scheduled to an on-demand service for most content, this is a good thing. And while the mobile apps don't stream content directly - you still need the mobile apps for each network, it's a convenient front-end for everything. I can find the shows I like in the Freeview FV app, tap them and they launch in the corresponding network's mobile app.

It won't be long until antenna installations are a thing of the past, assuming you can get a decent internet connection.


Comments

    I realise the idea is to watch on demand, but what if you want to record a show for whatever reason, how do you do that? Cos I can't see a way to do it, which is why the antenna may be around for a while yet.

      Tested the main networks, they all seem to work on there except Ch9 that simply redirects to Nine's own streaming page

      **edit** apologies about the reply, must have hit that instead of post!

      Last edited 19/12/18 5:12 pm

    Surprise surprise, it's a bit rubbish. You can't actually watch all stations, some are still insisting you visit their sites directly and provide a link (so far I've noticed this for ABC and Channel 9).

    The quality is pretty poor too. The highest resolution video I've found so far was only 1024x576, and the compression artefacts were pretty bad as well.

    There's also some usability issues that have me thinking they didn't test this very well (if you move your mouse from below to watch a program, the mouse triggers the 'info' overlay which won't go away unless you move your cursor away and bring it back by going from the top of the program icon, not below).

      There's also the issue that some shows and sports have separate online streaming rights so can't be broadcast over the channel's streaming service.

    Well that was kinda pointless and pathetic. It's 2:30am and I figured I'd give it a go... Each channel I tried says "Goto this website to stream" or "Streaming is not available for this program"... You know what was available? The shopping shows... Buy me! Buy me! That's it.

    I'm always looking for decent online streams for FTA channels because our aerial doesn't work and we're in a rental so they won't do anything about it.

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