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Mar 07 2013

Poll: What would you like freesat to focus on?Freesat has made some radical moves forward in recent months to keep pace with the industries need to offer ‘interactive’ this and ‘on-demand’ that, but is that what the consumers want?

In our latest poll, we ask this very question. As freesat fans/consumers, what would you like freesat to focus their attention on? Is it to continue to roll out ‘broadband’ based services such as on-demand channels and apps, or to stick to ‘satellite’ based options concentrating on encouraging more SD and HD channels and improving the range.

To vote, simply select your preferred option from the left hand column and we’ll update freesat on the results once we have sufficient votes. The choices are:

On-demand – Keep pushing forward with the introduction of more on-demand services, such as the promised 4OD and Demand 5, and then focus on the continued pursuit for popular options such as Netflix and Lovefilm.

Applications – Most of us have downloaded apps thanks to our mobile phones right? Well with the new freetime service, based on the html5 platform, the possibilities are endless. Would you fancy Angry Birds on your freesat receiver, then maybe this is the choice for you.

PayTV channels – When people think PayTV, they naturally think sports and movies currently available from the likes of BSkyB (and BT). Well maybe this could be an option for the future; just think how many subscription based channels there are available, Sky Sports, Sky Movies, ESPN, British Eurosport! But does this take away from what freesat is all about, “free”.

HD channels – Usually a popular choice but has the television industry moved on? Are you still screaming out for more high-definition channels to satisfy you and your televisions needs for 1080i/p goodness? With enough momentum, maybe we could see Channel 5 HD and Film 4 HD on the platform (once existing contracts end).

SD channels – Possibly a long since forgotten tech, but standard-definition channels still hold their place as the most valuable asset to television platforms for bringing in the money, so would you like more SD channels to appear simply for choice, even if by its very nature that means more shopping, religious or entertainment channels.

Servers / NAS – Quite a niche market, but with more homes now networked up and many looking for a single server/NAS (Network-attached storage) type device to meet all their needs, should freesat be looking to incorporate such functionality within their freesat range of products? Imagine being able to watch your freesat recordings via another receiver in another room, whilst connected to your PC to stream your movies, music and holiday snaps.

Set-top box choice – With freesat’s decision to more towards improved compliance with their “G2″ spec receivers (namely the Humax HDR-1000S at the moment), there has been somewhat of a void appear with limited choice of simple SD and HD receivers, and even less choice of the old style freesat+HD recorders. Would your vote be for bringing more manufacturers to the table to improve choice, technology and competitive prices.

Stick to basics – For some (maybe many), you could feel that a part of freesat is lost each and every time a new function is launched. Should freesat stick to what they are, a satellite television platform offering freely available standard and high-definition channels, plus the option to record. If you have no interest in turning your freesat set-top box into a robot that tells you what to watch and when, offers you more movies than you could possibly watch in a life time, and make your tea for you, then fire your vote this way.

Please discuss your choice and why; a bit of debate harms no one!

80 Responses to “Poll: What would you like freesat to focus on?”

  1. Gordon S Valentine Says:

    I have gone for On-demand services. Mainly since more HD channel are out of Freeesat’s control. Since other than STV HD, it shows all the free ones, I believe.

    It needs to add 4oD and Demand Five to catch up with YouView.

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  2. VXL Says:

    I’d like a receiver which comes with software for Windows/MacOS/Linux and can be connected to a computer via USB. There are many such devices without the Freesat branding but for PVR functionality they are all but useless as broadcasters only use the now and next part of the DVB EPG specification. Such a device connected to the PC under my TV would give me everything I currently have in my Freesat PVR plus the ability to visit any Movie/TV/Music streaming website (not just the ones decided by equipment manufacturers as is currently the case) without having to switch sources on the TV. It would also be more power efficient as there would only be one hard disk running. Finally, it would allow recorded content to be streamed across my local network for viewing on other equipment in other rooms.

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  3. admin Says:

    Gordon S Valentine said:
    I have gone for On-demand services. Mainly since more HD channel are out of Freeesat’s control. Since other than STV HD, it shows all the free ones, I believe.
    It needs to add 4oD and Demand Five to catch up with YouView.

    Yep, I thought long and hard about including more HD channels (well, at least a minute!) but despite it being out of freesat’s control to a certain extent, votes will still swing that way. I’m sure freesat press the broadcasters for inclusion of their HD offerings, but with more focus, it is conceivable that something can be done.

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  4. mikeypop Says:

    I’ve said On Demand, simply because I want them to fulfil their promises with the 1000S in terms of functionality for 4OD and Demand5. There have been one too many broken promises from them over the years I think in terms of functionality not appearing on different boxes etc (not just their fault of course, the manufacturers/broadcasters share some of the blame). The G2 spec was supposed to eradicate that, but so far we’ve only got one compatible box and that is behind the main Freeview alternative (Youview) in terms of these features. If they want the service to be taken seriously then they have got to get this up and running as soon as possible.

    If not On Demand I would have probably said Apps (because I think they are a necessity these days, again in comparison to the competition) or HD, simply because it is still the buzzword in terms of most people’s view of TV tech, so they need to keep pushing it and expanding as much as they can (but again, it is as much a broadcaster thing as Freesat themselves).

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  5. stigbeater Says:

    i vote hd channels since i still got a g1 box may have voted on demand if i had a g2 though..

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  6. Martin B Says:

    Voted server/NAS but HD would be a very close second. Is it too late to change the vote to a rank order, might give a more interesting result! Great idea though….

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  7. admin Says:

    Martin B said:
    Voted server/NAS but HD would be a very close second.Is it too late to change the vote to a rank order, might give a more interesting result!Great idea though….

    Ranking it a little harder for me to sort. I can accept more than one answer, but they are given the same value so wouldn’t really influence the outcome much. Sorry.

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  8. Clem Dye Says:

    I voted for more HD channels, simply because Freeview has no spare capacity and many of the programmes that I watch (on More4, for example) are available in HD on Sky. More receivers are certainly needed — as I’ve posted elsewhere, the choice of PVRs and TVs that can receive Freesat is so limited that the platform is in danger of dying off through lack of kit to watch anything on.

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  9. David Says:

    Please please more HD channels…all the BBC HD channels including BBC world, bbc3 & 4 & often forgotten BBC news HD also 5HD & Film 4 hd,,,Aljazeera is broadcast in HD..& why no Eurosport HD ????..

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  10. Dan Says:

    Pay TV, especially with the new BT sport channels looking to rival sky from next season. We need sport on freesat!

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  11. alexander Says:

    Arrange the national stations onto freesat so that any one within the UK postcode system. This would include STV, UTV & S4C in HD. If this happened then people could access glasgow if they are liveing in lonlon.

    Once this happenens then would the RTE &TV3 want to join FREESAT?

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  12. admin Says:

    Please stick to commenting on what vote you made and why. Just so I can avoid this turning into another suggestions post…that will come in time again (as will joinfreesat awards if I ever get around to it!)

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  13. Keith (original) Says:

    I voted for more HD channels since that was my primary reason in getting Freesat / Foxsat-HDR in the first place. At the time I had no inkling that Freeview would ever be capable of HD.

    I too would have preferred to have been able apply a ranking.

    In decreasing preference…

    I would like to be able to receive certain subscription services such as Eurosport, and streamed subscription services such as TennisTV on a TV screen (personally, I’m only interested in Tennis). I can do this on a PC or iPad, but I would prefer to receive broadcast services, especially HD, ahead on streaming due to quality/download limits. With the PC I can pipe it to the TV but it’s ‘messy’ and far from ideal. Sadly, the PS3 also doesn’t support these services.

    I would also like to see support for smart-phones and tablets, particularly for setting/changing recordings.

    I would also like the boxes to act as DNLA servers in order to stream live and recorded programmes within a home network, thus allowing one receiver to provide content to more than one TV/screen.

    Of course these last two would be unlikely to benefit me directly since they are unlikely to provide these to non-G2 boxes.

    I would also like to see that Freesat are actively supporting and considering their existing non-G2 ‘subscriber’ base. It would be nice if they would encourage Humax to fix the few minor bugs which persist with the Foxsat-HDR.

    It would also be nice if Freesat could encourge the BBC to abandon their supposed platform-neutrality, which in practice appears to favour and promote $ky to the detriment of Freesat.

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  14. Stan Butler Says:

    Channels. Channels. Channels. Where is Sony TV…etc?

    Just focus on that.

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  15. Harrogatepablo Says:

    A more visually appealing EPG with better functionality.

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  16. Keith Cobby Says:

    I voted for more HD channels.

    I doubt many of the other suggestions would be supported on my Panasonic G20.

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  17. Saltydawg Says:

    Although I voted for more HD channels, one thing I thing has been missed off is decent advertising! I would have voted for that over anything else. The more viewers Freesat gets, the more other channels and services will want to join the platform.
    Compare Freesat’s advertising against Freeview, there’s no comparison. When I first saw the Freeviw commercial, I thought at last, Freesat has nailed it……not so. I know they have a limited budget, but that doesn’t mean to say the have to produce crap adverts!

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  18. Daran Brown Says:

    as a retailer/installer, the vast majority of my customers want more channels, particularly HD. I live in an area where most of us struggle to get fast enough broadband for reasonable surfing, so more and more internet based services have limited appeal. Just keep it simple and get more of the FTA channels that are available on Sky free to view but not on Freesat

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  19. Russ Says:

    I voted for more HD channels as most TV’s sold over the last few years are full HD capable, and I feel with BBC and ITV partners in Freesat and both being public service broadcasters we should at least be able to receive all channels they broadcast in HD.

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  20. alexander Says:

    Russ said: I voted for more HD channels as most TV’s sold over the last few years are full HD capable, and I feel with BBC and ITV partners in Freesat and both being public service broadcasters we should at least be able to receive all channels they broadcast in HD.

    Make sure you can include every PSB stations into full HD.

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  21. Rosco Says:

    Russ said:
    I voted for more HD channels as most TV’s sold over the last few years are full HD capable, and I feel with BBC and ITV partners in Freesat and both being public service broadcasters we should at least be able to receive all channels they broadcast in HD.

    Not going to happen with the ITV 2 3 & 4 channels. They exist on dsat solely to earn ITV extra money from their share of the Sky HD subscription..

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  22. Neil Says:

    I’ve gone for more Pay TV, via streamed services. If freesat offers this over and above it’s core free to air remit I feel it will tempt more and more viewers from Sky. Get your extra viewers and higher sales, the extra HD and SD channels will also come along too once the viewing and market share increases.

    For the majority of people who want to dip their toes in to pay TV, ditching Sky and getting Netflix + BT Sport will go a far way to satisfying their TV needs. Don’t forget 95% of the most watched TV is to FTA and PSB channels so denting Sky’s subs revenue will mean they have less money to anti-competitively pay HD channels from being otherwise FTA.

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  23. jezB Says:

    I have gone for more HD channels, as Freesat, being satellite based, is awash with spare bandwidth and capacity.

    I don’t think the same can be said for the free terrestial TV system in the UK, even before the upcoming “Retunes + Squeezing” due to 4G.
    Shame about the BBC common HD feed, given that Freesat is capable of so much more than Freeview.

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  24. RAM Says:

    I voted for more SD channels in the hope that some of the UKTV family will come on board when their Sky contract ends in 2014.

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  25. Chris S Says:

    Torn between HD channels, Servers and STB choice. But plumped for Servers because that is the leap that will make Freesat stand out. All the other choices – you’ve got them already on other platforms!

    (Now drooling over the thought of a headless server tucked away somewhere, user-expandable with plug-in twin-tuner cards, twin hard disks in RAID 1 so that if one crashes you don’t lose all your recordings (and again, user-replaceable), gigabit ethernet. Then small client zapper boxes, about the size of an Apple TV/Roku/WDTV that actually plug into your TV and sound system, they find the server upon booting and to all intents and purposes it looks like you’ve got an individual PVR in each room.)

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  26. Dave Taylor Says:

    More HD Channels & ITV with Dolby 5.1 (like Ch4 & BBC)

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  27. Andy Watts Says:

    An upgraded user interface for the loyal customers whom own the earlier Freesat boxes. We cant all afford the £270 to upgrade to a new box.

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  28. Vic Says:

    Some Sports channels.

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  29. Terry Says:

    I’d actually like them to focus on greater brand awareness – specifically helping more people realise that Freesat exists and is a viable alternative to SKY for people who both don’t need or want all those extra channels and those people who still think they need SKY to get satellite TV.

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  30. Lee S Says:

    A UKTV on demand app on the new G2 boxes, even if it meant paying a small fee like £5 a month. I think Freesat could entertain small subscription services this way through 3rd parties as it is the choice of the consumer should they wish to watch these extra services.

    This would also get around the lack of any UKTV channels on freesat. Another idea would be for UKTV to create a new channel altogether that’s FTA on freesat, perhaps showcasing the best of their programming. this would get around any contractual obligations with sky.

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  31. kuergun Says:

    I choose “Stick to the basics” The reason why is because I could no longer afford Sky TV so I bought myself an HD Freesat Box and find that it suits my needs. Most of the other choices means paying out more money and I feel that the TV companies are getting enough via publicity. And I do not wish to pay (like Sky viewers do) to watch adds while I’m already paying a monthly subscription. So keep it “Basic” keep it FREE..!!

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  32. Soldierboy001 Says:

    I voted for pay tv because it would keep the number of set top boxes down and as they would all use the same system cut out the need for CAMs.My box came with a card slot for what seems no reason at all. People who say that this should not happen as is supposed to be freesat will still just be able to watch freesat on it’s own but others could watch pay TV as well. Other products have had dual use boxes so why not freesat boxes. Look at all the different things you can get on a smart phone.

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  33. Dipper Says:

    I voted for more of the existing channels in HD. The only other channel that I missed from when I was a Sky subscriber several years ago was Dave. Somebody at work told me about TVcatchup which is a free download and streams Freeview channels, including Dave. I’ve connected a pc to the VGA socket on my TV and it works a treat! Somewhat below SD quality but very watchable. Not a patch on HD from Freesat though.

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  34. Martin B Says:

    Great discussion! Not sure fresat can be all things to all people. My humax HD box that I bought within the first week of launch still serves up great HD and surround sound when available and it has access to Iplayer and 4OD. Those of you with old kit need not get too dismayed most companies have upgraded their kit much more than my old sky box ever got upgraded! Yes as someone who lives in the country and wanted digital TV I bought the sky+ box many years ago for the FTA channels. Problem was of course I had to pay sky £10.00 a month (and still do) for the privilege of recording! What that box does very well though is allow me to watch what I have recorded in any room. Although the picture is only SD it is far better than anything I have yet streamed online.

    @Chris S; what you need is a Ceton Echo system and a PC fitted with both satellite and terrestrial HD receivers to serve your whole house with fabulous broadcast quality TV. http://cetoncorp.com/products/echo/ unfortunately not officially available in the UK yet!

    I agree with much of what is being said here and feel freesat have missed so many opportunities. Most people I talk to have never really experienced proper HD. Many bought HD TV’s that have never had an HD tuner and display an awful picture in SD. Those who have newer sets that upscale SD can often not see much difference if they watch on a relatively small set. Freview is mostly only 720 as I understand it and even with the extra bandwidth freed up by the 4G sell off will never have the capacity of satellite. Those lucky enough to be in a cable network area may have the possibility of getting a proper HD service but I still feel satellite is the way to go as most people in the country can get it.

    My experience is that once people experience proper HD on a decent display they never want to watch at a lower quality picture.
    I also think there is a misconception that it is more difficult to install yourself and having the dish fitted puts people off even though it is done at a very reasonable cost. I have fitted my own dish and it was very easy as a dish doesn’t need to go on the roof! As everyone here knows it can be tucked away anywhere you like even at ground level as long as it can see the satellite and that can make fitting far easier than an aerial!

    Considering all our major broadcasters have an interest in freesat can’t they do something about the stranglehold Sky seem to have on satellite? There is so much potential in this format but they need to advertise properly and perhaps get a major retailer on board who will sell the benefits!

    PS Freesat should sponsor this site instead of attempting to run their own, badly!

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  35. Joe Says:

    RAM said:
    I voted for more SD channels in the hope that some of the UKTV family will come on board when their Sky contract ends in 2014.

    More SD channels for me too!
    With Scripps finally bringing Travel Channel to Freesat can Alibi, Dave, Watch and the other channels in the fleet be far behind?

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  36. paulie walnuts Says:

    More tv channels in HD please, nothing better than watching a good tv show in HD. I think more broadcasters will follow the likes of NHK & Russia Today by broadcasting in HD, just a matter of time. On-Demand doesn’t interest us, we have a couple of PVR’s.

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  37. Chris S Says:

    @Martin B – I know this sort of technology exists at the moment but none are Freesat-certified (full EPG and auto-updated) and some like this one require a full PC to be running! (I have no terrestrial reception BTW, so no Freeview).

    I guess what people want from Freesat and what it is meant to be are two different things. It’s a satellite TV service, so I don’t understand why people would want it to get into internet-delivered TV and why they would not want it to deliver satellite TV around the house! Paradox! Correct, it can’t be all things to all people – so let’s concentrate on the satellite bits. Correct, it can be seen as difficult to install, especially for reception in more than one room, so why not make installation easier, by technologies such as the multiple-signals-down-one-cable route or via a server product which will serve as a single point of connection to the dish for the whole house.

    Admin – hurry up and get some sort of suggestions and ideas facilty up and running, we need it!

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  38. mike65 Says:

    Stan Butler said:
    Channels. Channels. Channels. Where is Sony TV…etc?
    Just focus on that.

    QFT!

    I voted HD as that would be a plus for the platform but more channels esp from UKTV cluster would be the thing that gets Freesat more customers quickest.

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  39. Mark selby Says:

    more hd channels like eden tv hd

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  40. SL Says:

    HD channels, a lot of the SD channels are simply unwatchable because of their poor bitrate.

    I watch more HD than SD and SD outnumbers HD by about 25 to 1.

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  41. Rob Says:

    I would like (in this order) the priority to be:
    On-demand – This is the way forward with broadcasting and will keep the box relevant
    SD channels – The more free channels the better
    Pay TV – Nice to have the option to buy some extra premium content but not subscribe to SKY.

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  42. scott Says:

    hi i have voted for more hd channels too as they are more up to date. even though sd channels are good it can be annoying if you say miss a program you want to watch in hd or it fails to record then you end up having to watch the sd version. i dont mind getting more sd but would like more hd and freesat should stay as it always has been and that is free.

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  43. Chris S Says:

    This is assuming Youtube is considered an Application rather than On-Demand, regardless of what category it has placed itself… (On-demand to me implies TV and movies that you can watch on demand when you want, like iPlayer/Netflix/Sky Go etc rather than a home video collection site, although Youtube is now trying to re-brand itself as a TV channel broadcaster…)

    Applications are currently residing at the bottom of the Freesat owners wish list.

    You wonder why Freesat seems to be so out of touch with what its users want.

    But actually, dare I say it, it’s all about money. Companies like Youtube, Google, Facebook etc are clamouring for that most valuable commodity: demographic data and personal information. It’s what they crave. They desire to get their apps into peoples’ houses and into their networks, through all devices possible, and to get people creating accounts with them and logging in. If you have a network connected device it’s almost guaranteed that you will have at least one of these types of apps on it. Facebook in particular keeps rolling out measures that are unpopular with it users, but they don’t listen – they just keep pushing out more temptation to share your information over the net and push more and more adverts in your face and click-through stats… Am I paranoid, or just seeing things as the way they are? I don’t actually mind demographic stats being collected, what I do mind is the force-feeding of the methods used to do it. And it’s a shame that Freesat is going down the route of connected apps when there is so much more it could be doing with its technology. If it really thinks apps are important, how about providing us with some that *don’t* connect to the internet? Useful apps for around the home for example. I would guess ones that don’t transmit any information back to the developer would be few and far between.

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  44. Rosco Says:

    Vic said:
    Some Sports channels.

    Showing what sorts of sports?? If you want Prem football level sport then get a Sky sub.

    FTA sports channels have been a disaster on 28E over the last 10 years. Every single one has closed, gone encrypted or morphed into a different service.

    Sports rights are expensive even for the smaller sports that Eurosports typically shows

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  45. Rosco Says:

    Stan Butler said: Sony

    Sony Movies launched early May last year so I think we will find out whats happening with them fairly soon. My own belief is they will go full encrypted having spent a year “on probation” at ftv level..

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  46. Trippy Says:

    I went for HD, but would also love to have a remote record app for my iPhone.
    And a fouray in to MYTHTV between my time with Sky and Freesat makes the option of my HDR1000S being a DLNA server very appealing, especially as there is no RF out, like on Sky.

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  47. peterhb Says:

    I went for more improvement on the basics.
    I would have voted for more OD services but as I understand this it is down to the equipment providers and not Freesat.
    I have a Panasonic PVR which gets I-player fine but no ITV player because Panasonic refuse to provide the required support. So I guess there is not much chance of them helping with 4OD and 5 !!

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  48. Keith (original) Says:

    Not necessarily what I would like Freesat to ‘focus’ on, but they could certainly do with improving their forums on their website. Currently, they are all-but unusable with an iPad (1). It is clearly very poor and inefficient design and coding (speaking as a software developer with 23+ years experience), and if this is an example of why HTML5 cannot be implemented on G1 kit then it is a very poor excuse. Many HTML5 sites work very successfully and efficiently on an iPad1, which surely has a lower spec than a Foxsat-HDR.

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  49. Al (Original) Says:

    More HD channels. Plain and simple!

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  50. John O Brien Says:

    more movie channels and sony tv and RTE and TV3

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  51. strangequarks Says:

    “Al (Original) Says:
    March 9th, 2013 at 12:33 am

    More HD channels. Plain and simple”

    ditto, 59% are in agreement – but will freesat listen? Do they even care what the viewers want?

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  52. Rosco Says:

    John O Brien said:
    more movie channels and sony tv and RTE and TV3

    Unlikely, unlikely and 2X no chance :D

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  53. Joe Says:

    strangequarks said:
    “Al (Original) Says:
    March 9th, 2013 at 12:33 am
    More HD channels. Plain and simple”
    ditto, 59% are in agreement – but will freesat listen?Do they even care what the viewers want?

    Freesat are an enabler NOT a provider (for the umpteenth time on these forums!!!).
    It is up to the programme providers to decide if they broadcast on the Freesat platform not Freesat.

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  54. Rosco Says:

    Everyone who is voting for HD channels I ask you a simple question – where are all these HD channels going to come from? Putting aside HD channels tied to Sky encryption contracts what would you reasonably expect to see??

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  55. Rosco Says:

    Arise Network HD is a possibility as that one is already testing fta, but I cant see many more free HD channels coming along in the current economic climate

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  56. strangequarks Says:

    Look 60% of respondents wish to see more HD channels, so what is the point of the poll if we are not allowed to express our opinions? Stop apologising for the lack of HD please, freesat has been stagnant on this front for way too long. We, the viewers, wish to have more HD channels added, the result of the poll is clear to see. It is up to freesat to secure the HD channels if they have any desire to provide what viewers actually want.

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  57. Rosco Says:

    Who is apologising? – Im making a very valid point. HD channels are expensive for the channels to launch & run, and they get little extra benefit from it. So answer my question – where are all these extra channels coming from that folk expect to see??

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  58. barrie Says:

    As someone else alluded to earlier, many of the sd channels are unwatchable. For example; Horror, CNN, C5 family, the obscure moview channels, most music channels and sometimes ITV 2,3 & 4. Shouldn’t there be a minimum standard for broadcasters?

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  59. Rosco Says:

    That is a whole different kettle of fish

    C5 is very poor as they have all their channels squashed into one frequency.

    As usual its all down to money – increase bandwidth and it costs more for no extra benefit for the broadcaster.

    SD can look lovely – Im currently watching an SD feed of the Celtic game, and with the video running at over 7100 kbps its a gorgeous picture

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  60. mike65 Says:

    barrie said:
    As someone else alluded to earlier, many of the sd channels are unwatchable. For example; Horror, CNN, C5 family, the obscure moview channels, most music channels and sometimes ITV 2,3 & 4. Shouldn’t there be a minimum standard for broadcasters?

    Horror channel is fine for SD, the issues are the transfers esp US tv series. Monsters looks like 100th gen VHS copy. Films are fine as a rule.

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  61. Keith (original) Says:

    @57, Rosco. Well, there is one I can think of. RT Documentary HD (perhaps now called RT D) is available FTA on Hotbird on the same frequency as RT English HD (and the Italian Super Tennis HD – but that’s another matter). Perhaps Freesat could see about getting RT to add (or move) this to 28e, thus allowing it to be added to Freesat? I suspect there are cost implications, with Eurobird possibly cheaper (?), and 13e is a more Euro-centric satellite. Nevertheless, it would be nice to know if Freesat actively investigate such opportunities given that they previously seemed unaware of RT HD. It would at least be another HD (news) channel.

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  62. Two Pen'orth Says:

    Rosco said: So answer my question – where are all these extra channels coming from that folk expect to see??

    Of course we are going to vote for more HD channels. Who would say “no” if given the option of an extra £1,000 a week in the pay-packet?

    If the possibility of more HD channels is such an impossibility, then it should not have been a choice in the poll.

    As it was an option in the poll, then it is not for voters to question how the channels will be provided. People who are not experts can only assume that it is a valid alternative.

    Imagine having a non-existent political party on a General Election voting paper then complaining that people voted for it.

    Having read the arguments that there are unlikely to be more HD channels, I would change my vote to “stick to basics” but try and improve picture quality on some of the poorer channels. If that is at all possible of course.

    Thanks admin, a very interesting discussion.

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  63. barrie Says:

    Rosco said:
    That is a whole different kettle of fish
    C5 is very poor as they have all their channels squashed into one frequency.
    As usual its all down to money – increase bandwidth and it costs more for no extra benefit for the broadcaster.
    SD can look lovely – Im currently watching an SD feed of the Celtic game, and with the video running at over 7100 kbps its a gorgeous picture

    Sorry to appear thick but where do you find the 7100kbps figure? I saw part of the game and wasn’t impressed with the picture quality.
    Thanks

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  64. Rosco Says:

    barrie said: Sorry to appear thick but where do you find the 7100kbps figure? I saw part of the game and wasn’t impressed with the picture quality.
    Thanks

    I have a linux receiver that has a bit rate plug in . I was watching the feed on Eutelsat 7A at 7E and the pic was superb

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  65. Rosco Says:

    Keith (original) said:
    @57, Rosco.Well, there is one I can think of.RT Documentary HD (perhaps now called RT D) is available FTA on Hotbird on the same frequency as RT English HD (and the Italian Super Tennis HD – but that’s another matter).Perhaps Freesat could see about getting RT to add (or move) this to 28e, thus allowing it to be added to Freesat?I suspect there are cost implications, with Eurobird possibly cheaper (?), and 13e is a more Euro-centric satellite.Nevertheless, it would be nice to know if Freesat actively investigate such opportunities given that they previously seemed unaware of RT HD.It would at least be another HD (news) channel.

    Thats a good point about RT Doc. Admin – please suggest to your contacts at FS this would be a worthy addition to the FS lineup if they can persuade RT to launch it on 28E :)

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  66. Rosco Says:

    Two Pen’orth said:
    If the possibility of more HD channels is such an impossibility, then it should not have been a choice in the poll.

    Then Admin would have had a thread full of complaints saying “where is the option for more HD channels :D

    More HD services are not impossible – but the ones folk want (ITV 2 3 & 4 / & those from the C4 & C5 stables) are just unlikely in the current economic climate.

    Theres also the sad but true fact that most people dont give a flying fig about HD – how many times have you seen friends & family watching tvs where the aspect ratios are all screwed up? Or back in analogue days pics with less than perfect reception leading to ghosting?

    As long as they can watch the footy and Eastenders most folk dont care what the picture is like.

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  67. admin Says:

    The decision to include a HD option in the poll was essential. Whilst it is obvious that freesat don’t produce HD content, nor can magic them out of thin air, the point being raised is “should freesat be focusing their energies/funding on encouraging more HD channels to the platform”. Whilst there is only so much requesting they can do of the “missing” HD channels, if money was focused on that particular area, it might be possible to pursued some more. It might be the harder option for freesat to implement, as much of this is out of their direct control, but it clearly is what most are passionate about.

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  68. strangequarks Says:

    “Theres also the sad but true fact that most people dont give a flying fig about HD” is simply not true, can you not read the poll figures?

    More HD is what viewers want, the onus is on freesat to supply it. Certainly more HD channels would attract many new viewers to the platform, & an increase in subscriber numbers might tempt further HD channels – a virtuous circle.

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  69. Rosco Says:

    strangequarks said:
    “Theres also the sad but true fact that most people dont give a flying fig about HD” is simply not true, can you not read the poll figures?
    More HD is what viewers want, the onus is on freesat to supply it.Certainly more HD channels would attract many new viewers to the platform, & an increase in subscriber numbers might tempt further HD channels – a virtuous circle.

    Yes I can read the poll figures as well as you can.

    However this poll is actually from an unrepresentative sample of people / enthusiasts who care enough about whats happening with FS to have found the site out for info. I would have been amazed if more HD hadnt won this poll hands down.

    And you forget FS are nothing more than an epg service who aggregate content. Its up to the *broadcasters* to provide more content, so if you care about more fta HD content so much you should be contacting them..

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  70. Derek (Original) Says:

    Trippy said:
    ……. especially as there is no RF out, like on Sky.

    The lack of RF out on a Freesat box is easily overcome with SCART to RF modulators which are readily available from Maplin and Amazon to name just 2 places

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  71. Anthony Says:

    I would like to see less emphasis on connected tv and catch up via connected-stb-thru-broadband-phone-line connections and more actual on-air satellite tv and radio services.

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  72. Anthony Says:

    It would be nice to have more HD fta services but as things currently stand;none of those under Sky/VM’s remit will relinquish those services to us unless they choose to, or say “adios” to Sky/VM.

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  73. Dave L Says:

    I voted for more HD channels but would settle for higher-bit-rate SD. Both the old “Superbit” DVDs and several recent TV boxsets like Game of Thrones that similarly keep the number of episodes per disc down to push up the bit rate demonstrate that for screen sizes common in UK homes high-bit-rate SD plus a decent upscaler can be a pretty decent compromise if you can’t have HD/BluRay.

    While I appreciate there are non-Freesat branded receivers tuning into the same broadcasts as we do, I’d also be interested to know just how many people would now lose an SD channel if it shifted to MPEG4, allowing higher-resolution in the same bandwidth? With so many units supporting either timeshifting or watch-again, wouldn’t MPEG4 SD simulcast now be a better use of bandwidth than +1 channels?

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  74. paulie walnuts Says:

    Anthony said: It would be nice to have more HD fta services but as things currently stand;none of those under Sky/VM’s remit will relinquish those services to us unless they choose to, or say “adios” to Sky/VM.

    I agree too, its up to Broadcasters, what is to stop the likes of CBS broadcasting in HD? Answer-nothing, they are a huge U.S. conglomerate and could easily give us viewers HD if they wanted.

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  75. m tate Says:

    i agree with @paulie about the lack of “free hd tv” on freesat although the likes of ch5hd,e4hd,more4hd,itv2/3/4hd are already on the astra2/eutetelsat28a/b platform but tied in with ” the gatekeeper” and encrypted and not even on the ftv card either and theres film4hd on cable also….. imo its a farce, not to mention the uktv stable partly owned by the licence fee payers bbc commercial arm. i also think freesat should remain free with no pat tv channels whatsoever and the same goes for freeview… “free should mean free” and i think the should be a tight leash on the rubbish smut/phone-in stations aswell. lastly on the whole i think the freesat platform is a excellent idea and will only go from strength to strength and see no reason why every ex sky tv subscriber with a working dish on astra2 shouldnt come on board.. its a no brainer!!!!

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  76. Anthony Says:

    Dave L said:
    I voted for more HD channels but would settle for higher-bit-rate SD. Both the old “Superbit” DVDs and several recent TV boxsets like Game of Thrones that similarly keep the number of episodes per disc down to push up the bit rate demonstrate that for screen sizes common in UK homes high-bit-rate SD plus a decent upscaler can be a pretty decent compromise if you can’t have HD/BluRay.
    While I appreciate there are non-Freesat branded receivers tuning into the same broadcasts as we do, I’d also be interested to know just how many people would now lose an SD channel if it shifted to MPEG4, allowing higher-resolution in the same bandwidth? With so many units supporting either timeshifting or watch-again, wouldn’t MPEG4 SD simulcast now be a better use of bandwidth than +1 channels?

    I agree there are too many SD channels squeezed into mpeg2 bandwith resulting in inferior gritty noisy pixellated poor quality images.

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  77. Anthony Says:

    paulie walnuts said: I agree too, its up to Broadcasters, what is to stop the likes of CBS broadcasting in HD? Answer-nothing, they are a huge U.S. conglomerate and could easily give us viewers HD if they wanted.

    Wonder what happened to the CBS bid to launch HD versions of their channels? It seems Ofcom has either delayed the decision or CBS has had other thoughts. Also some of the programmes broadcast may not look brilliant on those because some of the programmes are on NTSC-PAL standards converted tape copies for UK PAL transmission;soft detail, lots of standards conversion flicker and mushy picture noise that translates to gritty noisy digital artefacts thru MPEG-2 DVB encoding in 576p res from analogue to digital.

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  78. Footy Says:

    mORE hd PROGS, THAT IS WHY I BOUGHT MY FAB hUMAX BOX FOR.

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  79. Dave w Says:

    I think they should just try and get some of the channels like dave-yesterday-quest-maybe few others this will bring more people to joinfreesat.co.uk

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  80. Peter L Says:

    Do agree with those who are saying freesat doesn’t have the power on what channels join the platform. Realisticly the only HD channels that are likely to appear in the near future on Freesat are more news channels and maybe some shopping channels if they go HD.
    Where Freesat can add content is in their on demand selections. We now have all the main broadcasters catch up services on freetime but what I would like to see now is services like Netflix and Lovefilm being on there. Having them in full HD with Dolby Digital sound would be great. The rumours of Netflix being added last year never came true so hopefully it will sometime soon.

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