Poll: What would be most important to you in the G2 spec?

With Freesat expected to announce the G2 specification and range of receivers in September, I thought it would be a good opportunity to ask what functionality would be most important to you in deciding to buy.

The functionality I’ve included based on information I’ve received so far are:

On-demand services
All 4 of the major UK broadcasters, BBC iPlayer, ITV Player, 4OD and 5 Demand.

Pay-tv options
Access to subscription channels (sports, movies, entertainment) via a pay-as-you-go type scheme.

Interactive (games, youtube…)
Web inferfaces such as YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and games.

Netflix/Lovefilm access
Subscription service to download/rent films.

7-day EPG rollback
Missed a programme, simply go back 7-days through the EPG and click to watch (linked with on-demand).

SCR LNB function
Designed to allow twin tuner access through a single cable, providing your LNB has the SCR facility.

DiSEqC function
Steerable dish commands from your G2 receiver to access channels from other satellites.

Simply vote below (use the left hand column if the one below doesn’t work for you):

[poll id=”42″]
(if you receive a “Please choose a valid poll answer” message, just vote using the left hand column – I am working on it!)

93 thoughts on “Poll: What would be most important to you in the G2 spec?”

  1. Neil said: As Richard says, these services are streamed and complement freesat’s offering for those wanting to dip their toe in the water to buy the odd PPV event. I don’t see an issue with this and anything that prevents people having to venture over to the dark side to get this (and be tied in to a 12mth subscription) sounds good to me!

    The label says Freesat not Paysat.

  2. I think the thing that most of us want, and most of us already have the equipment, is more HD. Why can’t new channels like 4seven be exclusively HD, like NHK.

  3. Brian McNaughton said:
    A speedy delete function for stored programs on the receivers. My Humax box takes a long time to delete a program so if you have a series to delete it takes forever. Or what about folder delete to remove all the stored programs in it at one go.

    You can already do a folder delete by entering edit mode.

  4. Bodger said: The label says Freesat not Paysat.

    As far as I see it there is no change, it is still Freesat even if subscription services are offered. You are not obliged to have them and therefore can just choose to use the core product. TV is changing and surely by Freesat offering an enhanced service develops the platform overall making it more attractive to more people, resulting in more sales of boxes in turn making Freesat more attractive (due to more users) to future channels. Or perhaps I am just viewing this simplisticly?

  5. Not a ‘Do Want’ more ‘I Don’t Want’

    I dont want ‘Pay TV’ as part of FreeSat.

    I never wanted ‘Top Up TV’ as part of Freeview either.

    The whole ethos of ‘freesat’ is non-subscription TV

    Cheers, daveac

  6. Mark White said: As far as I see it there is no change, it is still Freesat even if subscription services are offered.You are not obliged to have them and therefore can just choose to use the core product.TV is changing and surely by Freesat offering an enhanced service develops the platform overall making it more attractive to more people, resulting in more sales of boxes in turn making Freesat more attractive (due to more users) to future channels.Or perhaps I am just viewing this simplisticly?

    Couldn’t agree more there Mark, well put. There’s no obligation to pay or subscribe but for those who want the PPV/subscription option it’s there! It doesn’t even take up any satellite bandwidth as it’s all streamed too so, unlike TopUpTV, won’t compromise channel offerings in any way.

  7. Bodger said:
    I think the thing that most of us want, and most of us already have the equipment, is more HD. Why can’t new channels like 4seven be exclusively HD, like NHK.

    That would be foolish from the broadcaster – there are still far more SD set top boxes out there than HD and will be for many years.

  8. Access to all UK on-demand services should be a given.
    Technical features like DiSEqC and SCR LNB support likewise.
    EPG rollback coupled to on-demand would be nice.

    Pay-TV, Games, Pay films? Don’t see anything “free” about them. If I wanted to pay through the nose for niche programming, I’d go to $ky.

    This is just Freesat losing the plot.

    I’m supposing there’s going to be a spec for recording? I’ve an old analogue LiteOn HDD/DVD recorder that has excellent editing features, allowing unwanted material to be lopped off and segments to be rejoined to form a complete programme. Its a feature I’ve missed on other HDD/DVDs and PVRs. A G2 recorder with that provision would be high on my list!

  9. Some European TV channels would be good, if the rights issues could be sorted. Even if it was only the daily or evening national and regional news programmes, some of which are available on the internet and have beeen for some time.

  10. Roger said: Access to all UK on-demand services should be a given.Technical features like DiSEqC and SCR LNB support likewise.EPG rollback coupled to on-demand would be nice.Pay-TV, Games, Pay films? Don’t see anything “free” about them. If I wanted to pay through the nose for niche programming, I’d go to $ky

    I think there’s a big difference between pay-TV and demanding a long term subscription to $ky. For example, LoveFilm has many customers who pay for their on-demand viewing service. Adding this as a “channel” to Freesat seems like a logical evolution to me. It’s just like Box Ofice 365…. And if instead of old movies, the provider was streaming live sports (for example) where is the difference?

    For me, the “free” in “Freesat” meant subscription free. Not necessairly free of charge. After all, if you’re watching in the UK, you still have to pay for that TV license…

  11. More HD channels and no going back to 1440 HD lite BBC.

    The Sat part of Freesat will alway be free (apart from the TV licence) but some streaming services via your phone line will cost if you want them.

  12. I’m supposing there’s going to be a spec for recording? I’ve an old analogue LiteOn HDD/DVD recorder that has excellent editing features, allowing unwanted material to be lopped off and segments to be rejoined to form a complete programme. Its a feature I’ve missed on other HDD/DVDs and PVRs. A G2 recorder with that provision would be high on my list!

    All I can say is that every Panasonic HDD/DVD recorder has been able to edit like that. They have RGB inputs and I get great results recording from a Freesat HD box via RGB scart. OK it only produces an SD recording but the quality is much better than the SD off-air signal. The analogue connection doesn’t seem to affect it at all.

  13. Can I ask some people to bear this in mind when talking about pay services. I am a Sky customer right now. I want to leave Sky because I do not watch most of their channels. However sometimes there is content I’d like to watch but it is only available at a price.

    Freesat are set to offer the best of both worlds. Free by satellite, so it’s easily achievable to maintain the ‘Free – Sat’ ethos. Then options to allow pay services for those who want them, i.e. people like me.

    I can understand some people not wanting to pay for the streaming services – if not most people – but surely you want Freesat to grow as a brand, encouraging more channels (particularly the UK-TV channels such as Dave) to join the platform. Surely an incentive to this is to give buyers more options?

    I am not buying Freesat until G2 is released so I can have the option to pay for some streaming services. This isn’t Freesat going nuts, it’s sound business sense and should improve its position in the market on a long term basis. Please bear that in mind.

  14. All this G2 and streaming stuff is all very well, but I think quality HD content should be the core Freesat offer.

    Now that the extra Olympic HD channels have been removed we are back to the five HD channels.

    I think it is rather pathetic that all BBC and Channel 4 content at least is still not HD.

    A couple of days ago I watched a programme on climbing the Eiger on NHK – this is a channel who show what can be done.

  15. dave w said:
    err sounds good if it ever happens
    im sure joinfreesat promised details out april or may

    At least the Manhattan HDR-S is finally available.

  16. i to have a humax foxsat hd box about 1year and 1mounth old , when i first had the box it was fine updated properly red button worked ok. but after a few mounths it stopped receiving updates of channels,so i had to rescan alot of times then it kept telling me there were no channels. and it keeps sticking alot and now its so slow worse than my old sky box thats 14 years old. if freesat say its upto the manufacture for software updates not freesat and the manufacture wont release any new software updates then theres no hope i carnt even do updates the hd keeps sticking

  17. richard said:
    i to have a humax foxsat hd box about 1year and 1mounth old , when i first had the box it was fine updated properly red button worked ok. but after a few mounths it stopped receiving updates of channels,so i had to rescan alot of times then it kept telling me there were no channels. and it keeps sticking alot and now its so slow worse than my old sky box thats 14 years old. if freesat say its upto the manufacture for software updates not freesat and the manufacture wont release any new software updates then theres no hope i carnt even do updates the hd keeps sticking

    Channel updates are automatically sent to your receiver over night (typically 3am) when required; it isn’t the same as software updates which is coding within the receiver itself. Freesat are responsible for the channel updates and Humax for receiving them via the software in the receiver.

    If you can’t receive channel updates and the unit has slowed down considerably, try a factory reset or failing that, contact your supplier to see about a replacement.

  18. admin said: Shane, BBC increased their res prior to the games. Definitely better.

    Seems that the BBC have turned down the resolution now the Olympics is over, a shame I was really enjoying watching with the extra resolution, it was like having a new tv.

  19. Stuart said: Can I ask some people to bear this in mind when talking about pay services. I am a Sky customer right now. I want to leave Sky because I do not watch most of their channels. However sometimes there is content I’d like to watch but it is only available at a price.Freesat are set to offer the best of both worlds. Free by satellite, so it’s easily achievable to maintain the ‘Free – Sat’ ethos. Then options to allow pay services for those who want them, i.e. people like me.I can understand some people not wanting to pay for the streaming services – if not most people – but surely you want Freesat to grow as a brand, encouraging more channels (particularly the UK-TV channels such as Dave) to join the platform. Surely an incentive to this is to give buyers more options?I am not buying Freesat until G2 is released so I can have the option to pay for some streaming services. This isn’t Freesat going nuts, it’s sound business sense and should improve its position in the market on a long term basis. Please bear that in mind.

    Makes perfect sense to me. I’m NOT a $ky customer, but sometimes there is $ky content I’d like to watch. And I’d be happy to pay for this – just not pay for a 12 month subscription to a bunch of channels that I know I WOULDN’T watch. It’s a win-win scenario (2012?!) $ky get some extra revenue, Freesat gets additional viewers, viewers get to see what they want to see… Struggling to see the issue with this…

  20. Shane said: Seems that the BBC have turned down the resolution now the Olympics is over, a shame I was really enjoying watching with the extra resolution, it was like having a new tv.

    Back to 1440 HD lite is it? Nothing on worth watching anyway.

  21. Richard Crichton said: Back to 1440 HD lite is it? Nothing on worth watching anyway.

    Linowsat’s still reporting 1920x1080i. There was a general consensus with the fifth HD stream up and running on DTT and being used during the Olympics (with all other HD services now at full res) they’d got the new Encoder algorithms effective enough to run full res on DTT with five HD streams – all us DSAT users could breath a sigh of relief at the improved quality therefore?

  22. Although I dont think PayTV belongs on a free service, I personally think itd be a fantastic edition, if some providers sold ‘channel’ packs, consisting of say Sky1, FX, Comedy Central, few kids channels like Disney for families, and say Discovery, for a fiver or something a month.

    Think we’re more likely to see Watch, Gold, and a few other premium channels like that sold in packs if it comes.

  23. Neil said: Linowsat’s still reporting 1920x1080i. There was a general consensus with the fifth HD stream up and running on DTT and being used during the Olympics (with all other HD services now at full res) they’d got the new Encoder algorithms effective enough to run full res on DTT with five HD streams – all us DSAT users could breath a sigh of relief at the improved quality therefore?

    My Technisat confirms that BBC HD is still 1920×1088 so what Shane is seeing is the difference between live transmissions and VTR. Certainly the live pictures looked superb on my full HD projector.

  24. MKBob said:
    Most of these features are already redundant with latest smart tvs.
    What I want to see is more acceptance for existing Freesat HD amongst smart tv manufacturers and more number of HD channels compared to Freeview HD.
    Please don’t make us buy both a new smart tv and a new freesat hd box.
    It just gets too expensive for something we don’t need.
    DiSEqC function :
    Now why would I want to add this functionality when this means moving away from freesat and how many of us have a motorised dish?
    SCR LNB function & 7-day EPG rollback could be useful but won’t be missed.

    Whereas I can understand your financial thinking on this, integrated tv’s are a bit of a nightmare really.

    Sat boxes only seem to last a few years (presumably tv tuners are the same – I’ve certainly heard of failures), so an integrated tv = a potentially very expensive repair further down the line.

    It’s far better to my mind to have a tv and a set top box as then you only need to repair / replace the box if anything goes wrong. Probably far cheaper than paying someone to open up a hugely complex tv plus when you have to change the set top box, you also get all of the latest features.

    daveac said:
    Not a ‘Do Want’ more ‘I Don’t Want’
    I dont want ‘Pay TV’ as part of FreeSat.
    I never wanted ‘Top Up TV’ as part of Freeview either.
    The whole ethos of ‘freesat’ is non-subscription TV
    Cheers, daveac

    I couldn’t agree more Dave.

    Freesat isn’t here to provide a cheaper pay service for ex Sky customers, it’s here to provide a FTA tv service.

    Introducing Pay TV is the thin end of the wedge. Once channels realise they can go encrypted and charge for content, many of the current free channels will potentially go that way. The result is you end up with a poor man’s Sky.

    One or two main and all the naff channels FTA and all the better channels only available via Pay TV or Top up TV.

  25. Sorry this is off subject. ITV Player is now available on Samsung D8000 series via smart hub. Your TV will need a firmware update from Samsung web support, using a USB stick.

  26. Hi I know this has noting to do with the topic below but i will say The olympics was pretty epic and ya freesat did not advertise the red button channels but at least they got a good deal 🙂 My Question is can you get youview in ireland i dont see why not i all ready tweeted but no tweet back so this is the last place i looked 🙂 The g2 spec sounds pretty cool 🙂

  27. “One or two main and all the naff channels FTA and all the better channels only available via Pay TV or Top up TV.”

    Like it is now you mean. If you want the good stuff you have to pay extra it’s a fact of economic life. So now if I want to watch anything that’s the least bit exciting I have to get another set top box and pay that awful Murdoch fellow? That’s not going to happen in my house so why cant we have something optional extra on Freesat?

  28. Richard Crichton said: My Technisat confirms that BBC HD is still 1920×1088 so what Shane is seeing is the difference between live transmissions and VTR. Certainly the live pictures looked superb on my full HD projector.

    I was actually looking at the BBC news broadcasts on BBC One HD and whilst the Olympics were on, the picture just looked sharper. After the Olympics, the news seems to looked scaled down in resolution. It may have been my imagination, but I don’t think so.

  29. hi is the Pay-tv option like the top up tv thats on freeview if anyone can help
    i am hoping its the best of both worlds away from dodgy sky tv but with a few pay tv channels

  30. Shane said: I was actually looking at the BBC news broadcasts on BBC One HD and whilst the Olympics were on, the picture just looked sharper.After the Olympics, the news seems to looked scaled down in resolution.It may have been my imagination, but I don’t think so.

    The BBC news broadcasts on BBC One HD were live from Olympic park during the Olympics so would have been in HD. Not the case now.The regular news is not broadcast in HD so it will be upscaled on BBC One HD now. Yes you are correct in that.

  31. dave said:
    hi is the Pay-tv option like the top up tv thats on freeview if anyone can help
    i am hoping its the best of both worlds away from dodgy sky tv but with a few pay tv channels

    Freesat does not use encryption on the satellite channels so any pay options will be for broadband delivered services only.

  32. I certainly think the addition of IP services/channels and a 7 day historic EPG will help drive uptake, also a bit more work could go into the look and feel / usability of the actual GUI as whilst it’s by no means the worst GUI in the history of STBs it is still far from as polished as it could be.

  33. Richard Crichton said:
    “One or two main and all the naff channels FTA and all the better channels only available via Pay TV or Top up TV.”
    Like it is now you mean. If you want the good stuff you have to pay extra it’s a fact of economic life. So now if I want to watch anything that’s the least bit exciting I have to get another set top box and pay that awful Murdoch fellow? That’s not going to happen in my house so why cant we have something optional extra on Freesat?

    Far from it.

    If Freesat went Pay to View, I reckon you’d lose all the ITV’s, potentially all the 4 and certainly 4HD, Film 4, probably channel 5 and its channels and many others.

    In a pay to view scenario I imagine only the BBC would stay fta of the main channels and any decent minor channels would go as well.

    Richard Crichton
    “One or two main and all the naff channels FTA and all the better channels only available via Pay TV or Top up TV.”
    Like it is now you mean.

    If you really think Freesat is naff now then why are you on it? You’ve said above the best things in life are pay and you’re willing to pay so why haven’t you joined Sky?

    I and many others actually think Freesat is very good now. Sure it could be better and hopefully it will get better over time but I certainly don’t think it’s naff.

    All I can say is you’re watching the wrong stuff. There are some great series coming through on Four and Five at the moment the latest of which is “Person of Interest” on 5 USA.

  34. Any help …… I have seen listing that sky sports news FTA
    And few other channels
    Can these be added to guide on the new freesat g2 boxs

  35. Al (Original) said: Far from it.
    If Freesat went Pay to View, I reckon you’d lose all the ITV’s, potentially all the 4 and certainly 4HD, Film 4, probably channel 5 and its channels and many others.
    In a pay to view scenario I imagine only the BBC would stay fta of the main channels and any decent minor channels would go as well. If you really think Freesat is naff now then why are you on it? You’ve said above the best things in life are pay and you’re willing to pay so why haven’t you joined Sky?
    I and many others actually think Freesat is very good now. Sure it could be better and hopefully it will get better over time but I certainly don’t think it’s naff.
    All I can say is you’re watching the wrong stuff. There are some great series coming through on Four and Five at the moment the latest of which is “Person of Interest” on 5 USA.

    If all the ITV’s etc went pay they would have to go pay on Freeview as well. It aint going to happen. Ch4 is a PSB and gets a share of the licence fee so they can’t go PPV.It’s just scaremongering. No one in their right mind would pay to watch ITV, CH5 and similar mind numbing dross.

  36. Neil said:
    I certainly think the addition of IP services/channels and a 7 day historic EPG will help drive uptake, also a bit more work could go into the look and feel / usability of the actual GUI as whilst it’s by no means the worst GUI in the history of STBs it is still far from as polished as it could be.

    The 7 day historic EPG would be absolutely pointlless in my view. There are more than enough repeats of repeats of repeats on TV already and also standalone streaming catchup players and PVR’s so don’t see the need. A seven day future EPG for non live programmes would be of some interest.

  37. Richard Crichton said: If all the ITV’s etc went pay they would have to go pay on Freeview as well. It aint going to happen. Ch4 is a PSB and gets a share of the licence fee so they can’t go PPV.It’s just scaremongering. No one in their right mind would pay to watch ITV, CH5 and similar mind numbing dross.

    I believe ITV were reported to be talking about going PFV not so long ago, when their revenues were at their worst but then decided just to take ITV2 and 3 HD PFV instead. However, we could have easily lost all the ITV channels. I believe that at some point it was also reported that 4 were considering PFV options. How much truth in any of this, I wouldn’t like to say as I don’t want to get sued. It could just have been rumours.

    However, make no mistake, once you offer free money to broadcasters its tempting for them especially if the money offered is more than their advertising revenue.

    The only way to prevent that is to keep the Freesat system FTA.

    BTW, you mention Freeview, nothing to stop channels going PFV on Freeview given that it’s already set up for it. The only thing stopping it at the moment is the fact that those channels are FTA on Freesat. Introduce PFV to Freesat and you’ve removed the only barrier stopping many FTA channels from going PFV.

  38. We already pay to watch commercial tv by buying products advertised during programs.So why would we pay twice. I just don’t think non $ky people will pay again for so so gameshows and medium grade reality stuff as purveyed by many commercial channels. Connected is a different matter. I would pay a couple of quid a month for the new BBC Sport app just launched on Tivo or a decent advert free film channel but don’t want a bundle of
    low grade channels to go with the them. In other words I want Freesat as it is now but with an option for one or two special extra channels not available via my Blu-ray Smart Hub box.

  39. Richard Crichton said:
    We already pay to watch commercial tv by buying products advertised during programs.So why would we pay twice.

    PFV on Sky still has adverts so people obviously do pay twice!

    Richard Crichton said:I just don’t think non $ky people will pay again for so so gameshows and medium grade reality stuff as purveyed by many commercial channels.

    ITV 2,3,4 HD are already all PFV only and I’d personally hardly call the content on those channels riveting, in fact I think it more or less mirrors your description of medium grade stuff and gameshows from the little of 2,3,4 I’ve seen.

  40. I have just purchased a freesat box in May this year Samsung SMTS7800 which is a good box despite not having ITV-player and saying ‘coming soon’ doubt it will on this box, G2 the next generation freesat box is now due to come out but is it fair for people who just purchased a box, why can we not have this upgrade.

    Freesat is a good platform but too many providers of boxes and little support from box developers.

  41. Hi Admin ,

    I can’t get a straight answer from Humax on this, did they ever enable scr on the G2 boxes ?
    I can’t find it in the menus.

    Many thanks,
    Mark

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