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Youview, Freesat from Sky, Freeview & Freesat compared

The range of TV service providers in the UK grew to five after the arrival of Youview late this year. This new service, which takes over from Project Kangaroo, regroups some of the biggest names in the business (BBC, ITV, Channel 4, BT, Talktalk etc) and complements Freesat and Freeview by offering video-on-demand capabilities via the Internet.

(opens in new tab)As a hybrid service that combines terrestrial capabilities with web-based paid-for and video-on-demand, it will replace BT’s own BT Vision service, as well as give TalkTalk a foothold in the TV segment.

We’ve put together a handy comparison of Youview, Freesat from Sky, Freeview and Freesat, looking at their HD offerings as well as interesting features and pay services. We’ve omitted Virgin Media because, at the time of writing, the company did not have a no-strings-attached offer.

Youview

Freesat from Sky

Freeview HD

Freesat HD

HD Channels

6

6

5

5

Internet needed

    Dish needed

    l

    l

    Aerial Needed

    l

    l

    Free Recording

    l

    l

    l

    Split recording

    l

    Series recording

    I

    l

    VoD

    l

    l

    Catchup TV

    l

    UK Coverage per cent

    83

    98

    83

    98

    Channels (SD/HD/Radio)

    60/6/30

    240/6/85

    63/4/31

    108/5/38

    Pay services

    9 OD channels including 3 paid-for

    Optional £10p/m for SD/HD recording

    Top Up TV, BT Vision, ESPN

    Website

    goo.gl/R1dNr (opens in new tab)

    goo.gl/zMIdR (opens in new tab)

    goo.gl/gLTsr (opens in new tab)

    goo.gl/vJA10 (opens in new tab)

    Average price of set top box

    £249 (500GB)

    £175

    £120 (500GB)

    £170 (500GB)

    Contract

    Optional

    Optional

    Others

    Equipment rented unless you buy it. Costs include installation and dish.

    Désiré Athow
    Contributor

    Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.