Freeview is going toe-to-toe with the likes ofwith a new online service called Freeview Play that will combine live TV with on-demand programming delivered over the Internet.
A free-to-receive terrestrial TV service that launched as a joint venture between the BBC, Channel 4, ITV, Arqiva and Sky, Freeview has been providing UK residents with a selection of free channels for over a decade. Now however, it's plotting Freeview Play, a connected TV service that will debut later this year.
The new service merges live channels with on-demand shows in the same interface. YouView launched a service very much like this back in 2012, with a listings guide that lets you scroll backwards through time to play shows that have already been broadcast, whileand also blend live and on-demand viewing.
Freeview Play will feature on-demand programming from the BBC's iPlayer, as well as ITV Player and 4oD (which will). Although there are still plenty of details to be revealed, Freeview says the service will be available in a range of new TVs and set-top boxes.
"In the same way that we took the UK from analogue to digital," Guy North, Freeview's managing director said, "Freeview Play is the next step in that vision and it will put the viewer in control, without complexity, commitment or unnecessary cost."
Freeview Play will be arriving late to the party, with rival YouView already, and . As such, we'll be looking for Freeview Play to offer something unique when it launches later this year.