UK PSBs aim to evolve free TV for the streaming age | OTT | News | Rapid TV News
By continuing to use this site you consent to the use of cookies on your device as described in our privacy policy unless you have disabled them. You can change your cookie settings at any time but parts of our site will not function correctly without them. [Close]
As part of what they say is an evolution that puts the distribution of free TV at the centre of the streaming age, the UK’s largest broadcasters are coming to develop a new free TV service that will deliver live TV over broadband.
Everyone TV logo 18Sep2023
Set for launch in 2024, the new Freely service will replicate the terrestrial TV experience, building on the heritage and popularity of the Freeview TV platform, currently used in 16 million homes and provide broadband-only homes with easy access to a single consistent experience for live free TV over IP.

It will say the broadcasters, allow British viewers, to browse and watch live TV channels together with on-demand content streamed straight to their smart TV via the internet and for free. The service will be built-in to the next generation of smart TVs and feature a line-up of public service broadcaster content and other free-to-air channels.

Freely is being developed by Everyone TV, the organisation which runs free TV in the UK and is jointly owned by the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5.

Explaining the reasons for the move, the companies said as viewers increasingly consume content online, this next phase for free TV is about the distribution and availability of the PSBs’ live channels for a streaming age. It will help ensure the availability of PSB services into the future and complement the new provisions for on-demand and streaming prominence, set out in the draft Media Bill.

“We are delighted to be working with the public service broadcasters on the next phase of free TV’s evolution said Everyone TV CEO Jonathan Thompson. “This new development is a reflection of the fact that a growing number of UK viewers are watching content online, but still want easy access to the shared experience of live TV. Our aim is to ensure that all viewers have access to a free, aggregated live TV experience that champions British content and is delivered in a way that suits audience needs and preferences. Every one of us should be able to share in the best of British ideas and creativity on TV.”

Director general of the BBC, Tim Davie, added: “Ensuring the universality of public-service television is sustained into the future is of paramount importance to the UK and all its public service broadcasters. We are delighted to be deepening our collaboration in helping viewers access our content, ensuring that, in a digital age, we deliver value for all audiences and that no one is left behind.”