Updated March 2022.
Freeview is a brand name which encompasses all digital Australian channels that are available free-to-air under one name.
Freeview is important as we phase into digital TV across the nation and underlines the right for Australian’s to have access to quality television for free.
It allows features similar to streaming Apps which are paid for, allowing live streaming and catch up TV – but for free. Freeview is owned across the board by all of the free to air networks which appear on it.
In order to use Freeview TV, all you need is a High Definition (HD) set top box, or a HD integrated television. This will be able to receive all Freeview channels automatically. A Freeview endorsed set-top box will cost you about $100 if you don’t want upgrade to a new HD TV.
The great thing about Freeview is that it is, as its name suggests, free!
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The Freeview FV App
In November of 2016, Freeview also released an App for iOS and Android called Freeview FV which allows access to live-streaming via App on mobile devices or tablets. This App simply redirects users back to each relevant network, whilst allowing access from one point of call.
If you have a non-digital TV you will need to purchase a Chromecast dongle (for between $60-$100) to support the App. Then you can cast your shows up to the TV screen. Otherwise you can also cast your viewing up via Apple TV or other cast-mirroring services.
What are the features of Freeview?
The main features include an electronic program guide (EPG) which will show you all of the channels and programs available free-to-air, displaying what is showing and at what time. It’s also the most accurate method for finding out this information, as networks may change TV shows and update the programming at any time. You’ll be able to mark your favourite shows and set reminders too.
You’ll gain access with a 7-day forecast, meaning you can say goodbye to those magazine TV guides milling around the lounge room. Simply press a button on your remote control and enjoy the convenience of up to date information at your fingertips.
Freeview also certifies those televisions, set-top boxes and personal video recorders which meet the Freeview standards so you’ll know which to pick to get access to services.
Freeview will ask you for your location, allowing the right channels for your area to become accessible to you.
The 32 current channels on Freeview TV include:
- ABC, ABC HD, ABC 2, ABC Kids, ABC Me, ABC News
- SBS, SBS HD, SBS Viceland, SBS Viceland HD, SBS Food Network
- 7 Network, 7 HD, 7 TWO, 7 Mate, 7 Mate HD, 7 Flix
- 9 Network, 9 HD, 9 GO!, 9 GEM, 9 Life, 9 NBN
- Ten Network, 10 HD, One, 11
- 15 Spree TV
Home entertainment has come a long way, with on-demand viewing and HD TV cementing itself as a must-have in the home. Freeview is here to stay and extra features will be added over time.