The Desk appreciates the support of readers who purchase products or services through links on our website. Learn more...

Everyone TV offers sneak peek at forthcoming Freely streaming service

The streamer will make the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 linear channels and on-demand content available through a single app.

The streamer will make the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 linear channels and on-demand content available through a single app.

The electronic program guide for the forthcoming British streaming service Freely. (Courtesy photo)
The electronic program guide for the forthcoming British streaming service Freely. (Courtesy photo)

A consortium of British television broadcasters have offered a glimpse at their forthcoming streaming venture, five months after it was announced.

Over the weekend, the group called Everyone TV unveiled the user interface for Freely and affirmed the service is tentatively scheduled to launch in the spring.

Everyone TV is backed by Britain’s main terrestrial broadcasters — the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Paramount Global-owned Channel 5 — and aims to make their over-the-air signals available through streaming without the need for a separate app or subscription.

Freely will merge free linear streams from the four major broadcast operators and a handful of other content partners, including UKTV (Dave, Drama, Yesterday, W) along with their video on-demand libraries. Freely users will be able to seamlessly switch between live channels and on-demand shows without having to change apps or services, the group said.

Vestel, the electronics company behind nearly two dozen smart TV brands, has agreed to support Freely upon launch, joining Chinese brand Hisense in integrating Freely into their TV sets. Other electronics partners are expected to be announced in the coming weeks.

The Freely streaming service logo on a Hisense smart TV set. (Courtesy photo)
The Freely streaming service logo on a Hisense smart TV set. (Courtesy photo)

The development of Freely comes amid research from brand marketing firm MTM and its subsidiary 3 Reasons that suggests more than half of British television viewers will use broadband services for their main TV consumption by the end of the decade. A survey released last year showed around 25 percent of British streamers have already abandoned linear TV for streaming services.

“It’s clear the way people are watching TV is changing, with more audiences switching over to a broadband only connection,” Sarah Milto and Carl Pfeiffer, the joint chief product officers at Everyone TV, said in a statement. “We’ve built Freely around the needs of British audiences, bringing them the freedom to choose how they want to watch, with all their favorite shows from the UK’s leading broadcasters all in one place for free. We’re really proud of what we’re launching with Freely and are excited about bringing major enhancements like the Mini Guide to viewers as Freely launches in Q2 this year.”

“We are thrilled to announce our further partnership and commitment to the latest innovation in television technology, by offering customers TVs that are compatible with Freely,” Atinc Ogut, the vice president of TV product management at Vestel, said on Sunday. “Freely offers a seamless and intuitive user interface that aligns perfectly with our mission to elevate the way people experience television. The collaboration not only enhances the functionality of our TVs but also empowers users to freely stream their favorite shows, live and on demand, all from a single, unified platform. As one of the TV manufactures now compatible with Freely, we’re proud to be setting the standard for the future of television.”

Get stories like these in your inbox, plus free breaking news alerts on business and policy matters involving media and tech.

Get stories like these in your inbox, plus free breaking news alerts on business and policy matters involving media and tech.

Photo of author

About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is a nationally-recognized, award-winning journalist who has covered the business of media, technology, radio and television for more than 11 years. He is the publisher of The Desk and contributes to Know Techie, Digital Content Next and StreamTV Insider. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, the Walt Disney Company, McNaughton Newspapers and Tribune Broadcasting.
Home » News » Industries » Streaming » Everyone TV offers sneak peek at forthcoming Freely streaming service