So Freeview is the future of TV?

So we are being peddled all this guff about how Freeview is going to change our TV forever right? Well, for those that don’t know, Freeview is a conspiracy consortium that was created to promote the Free-to-Air channels in Australia in the move to Digital TV. You can see more of their propaganda here..

As you can probably tell by now… I’m not a fan. Here’s why.

Channels

Freeview ChannelsHere is the fancy graphic they have for the extra Channels. Well,  we know that Ten HD is actually not going to happen. Instead there will be One HD and One SD. So no Channel 10 programs will be shown in HD. Hardly a step forward…

Also, just what is the difference between 7/7SD and 9/9SD. Judging by their current efforts, not a bloody thing. So when 7 shows the bloody Tennis for hours on end, they’ll do it on all channels instead of alternate programming. One of the channels was thinking of instituting a channel that is just re-broadcast 2 hours later… Great effort there..

The government allowed the broadcasting of all these extra channels as of January 2009. Where are they? Not a bloody thing has changed… Oh they’re coming according to the flurry of press releases. Why aren’t they here? It’s not like they didn’t have time to prepare for the release date.

Programming

All these extra channels are just going to mean more access to all those shows that we didn’t get to see, right? All those protected sports that never get shown but can’t be sold to Pay-TV, they’ll be shown too… You wish. It’ll be more tripe like we have now but more of it…

EPG

The new all-singing, all dancing feature that is going to revolutionise TV… that everyone else has had for years… I can’t wait to see 7 days of Channel 9’s programming.. Movie, Late Movie and Late late Movie. There’s an effort. The funny thing is that the Details will describe the movie but just not name it.

Not only that, will the current EPG continue to be broadcast in a format that current TV, PVR and PC’s can translate or will it be the new encrypted format that only Freeview-compatible devices can translate?  I’m not holding my breath. My TV has a woefully tragic Now/Next guide  and I had to use a community-supplied Guide importer for my Vista Media Center.

One would hope that the EPG’s will be transmitted in tandem. After all, there are currently NO Devices ( as far as I know) that can handle the new MHEG standard encrypted EPG that Freeview plan to implement. That means your 2 – 5,000 TV will need an extra purchase to be able to handle the new “free” TV Channel EPG’s.

Not so progressive is it? Just yet another way that Australian Media is stuck back in the glory days… and Pay TV is no better… no wonder BitTorrent and international proxy software usage is increasing.

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