The UK’s four big broadcasters have joined together to compete with streaming behemoths Netflix and Disney Plus.
The BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 have joined together to launch a new free streaming service that will compete with Netflix and Disney Plus.
Each of the UK’s five largest broadcasters has built a framework for streaming live TV over broadband, which means you won’t need a TV antenna at home.
The new service, dubbed Freely, is set to start in 2024 and will be placed on the next generation of smart TVs accessible in the UK.
However, the app is unlikely to be available to anyone still using TVs manufactured before 2024, as the software cannot be loaded at this time.
Everyone TV, which operates free TV in the UK and is jointly owned by the five terrestrial networks, will develop Freely.
Its CEO, Johnathan Thompson, stated that TV broadcasting must now reflect the new world of TV, which is dominated by on-demand streaming platforms.
‘[Freely] is a reflection of the fact that a growing number of UK viewers are watching content online, but still want easy access to the shared experience of live TV,’ he said.
According to current figures, 15% of individuals in the UK do not have a TV aerial and instead choose to watch live TV using apps like All4, iPlayer, and ITVX.
This figure, however, is predicted to rise to 50% during the next ten years, as stated by Everyone TV.
Furthermore, ITV’s CEO, Dame Carolyn McCall, has stated that she wants free channels to be ‘simple to locate’ for customers who use internet-connected TVs.
‘More and more UK households use internet-connected TVs – it’s critical that the public service broadcaster channels remain available and easy for them to find.’
‘This new collaboration enables the UK public to continue to get all of their favourite British TV channels, for free — just as Freeview did at the advent of digital TV.’