If you want a lesson on how to confuse the hell out of customers about digital television, look no further than the lessons currently on offer from the upcoming Australian Freeview service. Not only are they promising 15 channels od digital programming when there currently isn’t 15 channels operating (and there’s no word on whether there will be), but as Ty Pendlebury over at CNet AU has discovered, the FreeView EPG won’t actually work with any current TVs or DVRs – to enjoy FreeView’s EPG, you’ll need to pony up a heap of fresh cash to get a product with the FreeView badge.That whole confusing conversation could lead you to ask, “What’s so special about FreeView’s EPG?” And the answer is “not even Freeview themselves know”. Apparently, they’re still working out the details…
It’s not all doom and gloom though – if you currently get the free EPG on your TV – you know, the one that takes half an hour to load two channels worth of info and is useless for all intents and purposes – you’ll still get it even after the Freeview EPG has been launched.
If you want my advice (and I know you do), it’s to completely ignore Freeview. Get yourself a TiVo (which has their own EPG), a Foxtel iQ (which has their own EPG) or a third party DVR running IceTV (which you have to pay a subscription for, but seriously, it’s so much better than the “free” alternative). Freeview is essentially a marketing campaign that has done nothing but confuse consumers about what their real options are.
[via CNet AU]