Freeview to revamp service

Freeview is launching a revamped service that will allow Kiwis to stream content from the internet.

FreeviewPlus will launch in mid-2015 and will require people to buy a new set-top box or approved TV though the service itself will remain free.

The news follows the launch of Netflix in New Zealand this week which will compete with local television streaming services Lightbox, Neon and Quickflix.

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FreeviewPlus will allow viewers to find, bookmark, watch or stream their shows directly to their TV. 

The new electronic programme guide will bring together all available content from TV One, TV2, TV3, FOUR, Māori Television and about 20 other channels as well as TVNZ OnDemand, 3NOW and Maori Television OnDemand. 

It will also feature more than 600 on-demand shows and movies

The new service is based on the Hybrid Broadcast Broadband TV platform which means you can get both standard broadcast free-to-air TV and content delivered over the internet, such as catch-up TV.

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FreeviewPlus smart TVs and set top boxes from LG, Samsung, Sony and Panasonic will be available in all leading electronics retailers from April. 

Viewers who upgrade to these and connect them to their UHF aerial and home broadband, will automatically pick up the FreeviewPlus service when it goes live.

Freeview says Kiwis still use televisions as their main way of watching with a recently released report by Nielsen showing nearly 3.6million watch content on a TV set (92 per cent of the population) with around 10 per cent of homes having a smart TV.

Freeview was launched in 2007 to transition Kiwis from  free-to-air analogue TV to digital TV.

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 - Stuff.co.nz

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