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New Freesat Service to Offer Broadband TV

Posted: 07th May, 2008 By: MarkJ
The BBC and ITV recently announced the official launch of their new Freesat service, which aims to offer every household in the UK a Freeview style TV service via a satellite dish; though technically you can already do this through Sky (albeit not in HD without added costs).

Now the BBC director general, Mark Thompson, has confirmed to the Guardian that the broadcasters have even more ambitious plans for the platform. This includes access to on-demand programming via broadband TV services such as iPlayer and Kangaroo:

Thompson, speaking at the press launch of Freesat today, said the service was aiming to swiftly ["within months"] offer viewers broadband internet access through an in-built ethernet connection in set-top boxes.

"The long-term goal of Freesat is to connect to broadband and the internet [to make] services such as the iPlayer and Kangaroo accessible through boxes like this," he added.

Thompson said that offering broadband access via Freesat boxes, something that BSkyB is also aiming for with its Sky+ personal video recorder boxes, marked "something new in satellite broadcasting in this country" that would be available to all households.

Though the idea is likely to be welcomed by some, it could also add further fuel to the ever present net neutrality debate (related news). Indeed we suspect that any ISP operating its own Internet TV (IPTV) service might be aggrieved by the presence of Freesat on their customers’ connections. What do you think?
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