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Getting Freeview Play

Do I already have Freeview Play?

Only if you bought a Freeview Play product since November 2015.

Freeview Play is not built into most existing TV or recorders pre-2016 as it uses a new standard which requires different software. You can add Freeview Play to your current TV by connecting it to a Freeview Play recorder.

Freeview Play is built into TVs from the following manufacturers:

LG
Panasonic
JVC
Hisense
Hitachi
Toshiba
Philips
Sony 

Plus a number of retailer own brands: Bush, Polaroid, Luxor, Celcus, Laurus, Digihome, Linsar, Mitchell and Brown, Telefunken, Techwood, Walker

See the Freeview Play product range.

Recorders

Humax
Panasonic

More brands will release Freeview Play products over time.

What is Freeview Play?

It’s an easy way to enjoy catch up TV from Freeview.

All you have to do is connect your Freeview Play TV or recorder to the internet*, then scroll back through the TV guide and find a show you missed. You will find programmes from BBC iPlayer, the ITV Hub,  All 4, Demand 5 and UKTV Play sitting alongside live television in your TV Guide. Other services are available from the Freeview Play apps page such as BBC News and BBC Sport.

All Freeview Play products come with:

  • Over 70 standard channels
  • Up to 15 HD channels
  • Catch up TV available directly from the TV guide
  • Freeview Play apps page with access to TV players
  • Red Button+ service on BBC channels
  • Streaming channels on the TV guide

FREEVIEW_PLAY

*A minimum broadband speed of 2Mbps is required to watch catch up and on demand services – this will count towards any monthly broadband data allowance. Only selected channels provide 7-day catch up.

 

Freeview Play products now available from Panasonic, LG, JVC, Philips, Hisense, Sony, Humax and more

Freeview Play is now widely available from the manufacturers below with more to follow.  Check before you buy as Freeview Play is not in the whole model range for some manufacturers.

Freeview Play is built into TVs from the following manufacturers:

LG
Panasonic
JVC
Hisense
Hitachi
Toshiba
Philips
Sony

Plus a number of retailer own brands: Bush, Polaroid, Luxor, Celcus, Laurus, Digihome, Linsar, Mitchell and Brown, Telefunken, Techwood, Walker

See the Freeview Play product range.

Recorders

Humax have a range from 500GB storage to 2TB (which is the equivalent of 500 hours of HD recording).

Humax FVP-5000T 500GB

Humax FVP-4000T 500GB

Humax FVP-4000T

Panasonic also have a range of digital TV recorders:

Panasonic DMR-HWT150EB

Panasonic DMR-HWT250EB

With Blu-ray built-in:

Panasonic DMR-PWT655EB

Panasonic DMR-PWT550EB

In all cases, with a new product, it is important that you check for the latest software during the setup process.

Is Freeview Play really subscription free?

Yes. As ever, with Freeview you get the channels free to view. On top of that, Freeview Play gives you lots of catch up TV to choose from. However, you will need a broadband subscription. With Freeview Play, you have the freedom to move between broadband providers to find the best rates.

What does Freeview Play offer?

Freeview Play is a connected TV service with no monthly cost. You can catch up on TV you’ve missed by scrolling back through the TV guide; there’s no need to go into an app or find a repeat to record. If you want even more TV on demand, go to the Freeview Play apps page, where you’ll find BBC iPlayer, the ITV Hub, All 4, Demand 5 and UKTV Play all in one place.

Freeview Play features:

  • Watch over 70 standard channels and upto 15 HD channels
  • Scroll back through the TV guide to catch up on TV you’ve missed
  • Enjoy on demand services like BBC iPlayer, the ITV Hub, All 4, Demand 5 and UKTV Play
  • There are no contracts and no monthly costs, you’re in control

See the Freeview Play product range.

Which products have Freeview Play?

You’ll find Freeview Play in a wide range of  TVs and recorders. More brands will become available over time.  Check the product has Freeview Play built in before you buy as some manufacturers do not include it across the whole product range.

Freeview Play is built into TVs from the following manufacturers:

LG
Panasonic
JVC
Hisense
Hitachi
Toshiba
Philips
Sony

Plus a number of retailer own brands: Bush, Polaroid, Luxor, Celcus, Laurus, Digihome, Linsar, Mitchell and Brown, Telefunken, Techwood, Walker

See the Freeview Play product range.

Recorders

Humax
Panasonic

In all cases, with a new product, it is important that you check for the latest software during the setup process.

Where can I buy Freeview Play products?

Freeview Play products are now available to buy from Currys, John Lewis, Amazon, Richer Sounds, TescoArgos and independent retailers.

You will find Freeview Play in TVs from the following manufacturers:

LG
Panasonic
JVC
Hisense
Hitachi
Toshiba
Philips
Sony

Plus a number of retailer own brands: Bush, Polaroid, Luxor, Celcus, Laurus, Digihome, Linsar, Mitchell and Brown, Telefunken, Techwood, Walker

See the Freeview Play product range.

Recorders

Humax
Panasonic

What do I need to get Freeview Play?

You’ll need a Freeview Play TV or recorder, a working TV aerial, and broadband access so you can connect to the internet.

Firstly, make sure your aerial is plugged in to the aerial socket in the back of your TV or recorder. Then connect your TV or recorder to broadband using Wi-Fi* (or an Ethernet cable directly from your router if it is near enough**). Next you’ll be asked to tune in to get your Freeview channels, which will take a few minutes, and then you’re good to go.

Diagram showing TV and Ethernet or Wifi box

Most TVs now include the option to connect using Wi-Fi and as long as you have a connection speed of more than 2Mbps you should be able to watch catch up TV. If you can’t see programmes when you scroll back in the TV guide, then you’re not connected to the web.

Check out the latest products

*A minimum broadband speed of 2Mbps is required to watch catch up and on demand services – this will count towards any monthly broadband data allowance. Only selected channels provide 7-day catch up.

** If Wi-Fi isn’t strong enough, and you can’t run an ethernet cable because your router is too far away, you may want to consider a powerline adapter.

What do I look for in the shops?

Just look for the Freeview Play logo in store or ask your retailer. Freeview Play is available in a wide range of TVs and in Panasonic and Humax recorders.

FVP TV

A number of other manufacturers are currently working on their Freeview Play products.

All Freeview Play products come with:

  • Over 70 standard channels
  • Up to 15 HD channels
  • Catch up TV available directly from the TV guide
  • Freeview Play apps page with access to BBC iPlayer, the ITV Hub, All 4, Demand 5 and UKTV Play
  • Red Button+ service on BBC channels
  • Streaming channels on the TV guide

In addition, Freeview Play recorders will allow you to record one channel while watching another, series record, and pause live TV. These recorders give you Freeview Play functionality with your existing TV.

LG has released a software update to bring the Freeview Play scroll-back TV guide to compatible 2016 LG TVs

This article referred to Freeview Play compatible 2016 LG TVs.  Most 2017 LG TVs come with Freeview Play built in.

If you have a new 2016 Freeview Play LG TV then after set up, if you turn the TV off and on again you should be prompted for the software update as long as you are connected to the internet.

With an existing TV, if you do not receive a prompt when you switch on then try turning off and on again.  If this doesn’t work follow the steps for manual software update below. When prompted, you will need to accept and download the update. Once this is complete, try scrolling backwards in the TV guide to see programmes that are highlighted as available on demand.

In some cases a retune may be required to enable the scroll-back TV guide – you should receive an on screen prompt to do this.  You will be taken to the Programme Tuning menu – select Auto Tuning > Antenna > Digital Only Search – retuning will take a few minutes to complete.

Manual software update

If you missed the onscreen software prompt don’t worry your TV will remind you periodically. If you’re keen to download now there’s a way of doing it manually:

  1. Press the settings button (a picture of a cog) on your LG remote control. A column of icons will appear on the right-hand side of the screen. Move to the bottom icon – All Settings – using the arrow keys and select this.
  2. The All Settings menu will appear on the left-hand side. From here, move down to ‘General’ and use the arrow key to move right into the sub-menu.
  3. Move down to ‘About this TV’ and select this.
  4. Move down and select ‘Check for updates’.

You will see your software version and a button to check for updates.  The following software versions contain the Freeview Play update (your software will depend on the model number):

v04.30.40

v04.30.50

v04.30.65

Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the installation.

In the case that you need to retune to see the scroll-back TV guide follow these instructions:

  1. Press the Settings button (a picture of a cog) on your LG remote control. A column of icons will appear on the right-hand side of the screen. Move to the bottom icon – All Settings – using the arrow keys and select this.
  2. The All Settings menu will appear on the left-hand side. From here, go to the Programmes option and select Programme Tuning & Settings from this list.
  3. Once in the Programme Tuning area, select Auto Tuning > Antenna > and Digital Only Search.
  4. Your LG TV will then begin auto-retuning and may take a few minutes to complete.