Read this: Broadcasters agree £125m Freeview deal to combat Netflix threat
Summary: The BBC, ITV and Channel 4 have agreed a new deal to invest in Freeview, the free digital television service, in response to sweeping changes in audience behaviour and competition from streaming operators such as Netflix and Amazon. The three broadcasters, together with Arqiva, which owns and operates the national transmitter network, have sealed a £125m, five-year deal to develop new services for Freeview, including an app that will allow viewers to watch programming from the broadcasters live and on demand. Proponents of public service broadcasting hope the investment will lead to more collaboration between channels, including a Netflix-style service that aggregates all available content from the BBC, ITV and Channel 4. Pressure is building on the three organisations to work more closely together in the face of competition from Netflix and Amazon, which have vastly greater spending power. Sharon White, chief executive of Ofcom, the UK’s media regulator, recently called on them to “collaborate to compete”. When competitors like Netflix are spending $8bn a year on content and $1bn a year on engineering, we need to think about what is good for the consumer and the creative industries Carolyn McCall and Alex Mahon, the new chief executives of ITV and Channel 4, have also talked of the need to join forces in an increasingly competitive marketplace. “When competitors like Netflix are spending $8bn a year on content and $1bn a year on engineering, we need to think about what is good for the consumer and the creative industries, and where we should work together to make sure those values of public service broadcasting are best served in the UK,” said Ms Mahon recently. Channel 4 also is working with the BBC to lobby for the prominence of public service broadcasting content in the user interfaces and programme guides of new streaming services. “This new commitment from our shareholders is a major boost for UK viewers,” said Jonathan Thompson, chief executive of Digital UK, which runs the Freeview platform. Further collaboration between the broadcasters would “safeguard free-to-view TV” and “reinvent it for a new age of viewing”. As viewers “cut the cord” and cancel pricey pay-TV subscriptions, free-to-air terrestrial television has become increasingly important, with viewers taking Freeview alongside a subscription to Amazon or Netflix. Today, more than 11m homes use free-to-air terrestrial services — 1m more than in early 2016, according to BARB, the standard for TV measurement in the UK. - www.ft.comwww.ft.comBroadcasters agree £125m Freeview deal …
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There's no such thing as free TV, as you have to pay for a TV licence to watch any channel, which cost around ?155 a year, I think. Thus Freeview and Freesat are misleading and should be corrected. Most people watch satellite TV in my area (Caerphilly) because Freeview is so poor with few channels, although you can watch the Sewing Quarter channel and we get 2 X BBC3 channels but of course there is no information on them and several other 'no information' channels. It would not bother me if Freeview disappered from my area.
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The Government requires that to operate a TV receiver to watch 'live' programmes you must have a broadcast receiving licence. The Freeview and Freesat services are provided 'free' as there is no requirement to pay a subscription to watch via those systems - hence it is absolutely correct to call them Freeview and Freesat. Unlike watching via the Sky plartform where you have to pay a subscription to watch anything beyond the PSB services - and you still need the licence.
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