Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The Best Thing Ever...

Did I ever mention that we finally cancelled the Sky subscription? I know I'd been talking about it for years, since "24" and "Lost" finished in fact (yikes!), but we finally got around to cancelling it back in June, and reached the end of the cancellation period in July.

We lasted less than 24 hours before missing it. The reason for this was quite simple: we were still using the Sky box to view TV (as it had more channels than Freeview), and the TV Guide continued to show all the channels, giving an overwhelming impression of "here's what you could have won!" Plus, we no longer had the ability to record TV, which was a pain.

So, after some deliberation, we purchased a Freeset HD recorder. We went for Freesat for two reasons: more HD channels, and we already had the dish set up from the Sky subscription. So, it was just a case of removing one box and replacing it with the other.

Which is great. We can once again record TV, we now have "Doctor Who" in HD (although, frankly, I can't tell the difference), and all is well.

But what the Freesat box also gives us is iPlayer through the TV.

Now, I've mentioned iPlayer before, in the context of watching "Birdsong" on my laptop, which I found rather unimpressive - the screen was too small, the headphones were annoying, and the buffering was a... pain.

(Yes, it is the same joke. I like it a lot.)

But on the TV the first two of these are eliminated, while the issue with the buffering is also dealt with - apparently that was at least partly due to the wireless network speed, and the Freesat box uses a wired link, so it's faster. Granted, the picture quality isn't great on such a large screen, but it's okay.

And suddenly iPlayer has gone from being something I almost never use to being the Best. Thing. Ever.

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