BBC to end iPlayer support for first generation Freesat boxes

A whole raft of first generation Freesat boxes, including some still available to buy today, will lose access to the BBC iPlayer in September.

As spotted on the Digital Spy forums, and announced on the iPlayer website, the BBC has confirmed it won't be supporting the old MHEG-based version of its catch-up and on-demand service beyond September 2016. The move will affect some models only two years old.

Meanwhile, customer service staff at ITV, which is the only other provider to offer a catch-up TV service on first generation Freesat boxes, have indicated there isn't yet any information on any changes to the current line up of devices supported by the ITV Hub, including first generation Freesat devices

Some of the affected Freesat receivers are still being sold at various retailers such as John Lewis and Amazon, with iPlayer compatibility prominently displayed in the advertising. We're currently awaiting responses from manufacturers of the affected devices.

Since 2012, Freesat has been offering a new service called Freetime, which offers a wider range of on-demand players from major broadcasters, including the latest version of iPlayer. Freetime users are unaffected by this change.

The full list of devices, provided by the BBC: 
Affected devices are mostly first generation Freesat boxes, with some older Freeview devices in the list as well:

Company
Product
Model/ Year
Bush
FSAT+500
2014
Bush
FSATHD
2014
Bush
FSAT+500
2014
Bush 
BFSAT01HD
2009
Bush 
7105 (320GB)
2011
Bush 
7105 (500GB) model:
BU11FSRHD50
2011
Echostar
HDS-600RS
2011
Ferguson 
F101HDSAT
2010
Goodmans 
7105 (500GB) model:
GD11FSRHD50
2011
Grundig/
Goodmans
GFSDTR500HD (500 GB)
2009
Grundig/
Goodmans 
Grundig GUFSAT01HD/
GFSAT200HD
2010
Grundig/
Goodmans 
GFSDTR320HD (320GB)
2009
Humax
Foxsat HD
2008
Humax
Foxsat HDR (320GB/500GB/1TB)
2008
Logik
LHDFSAT11
2011
Logik
LHDFSAT11
2011
Manhattan
Plaza HD-S
2011
Manhattan
Plaza HD-S2
2013
Manhattan
Plaza HDR-S
2012
Panasonic
PAL09
2009
Panasonic
PAL10 - TX-L37G20B
2010
Panasonic
DMR-BS850/DMR-BS750/DMR-XS350
2010
Panasonic
PAL08
2008
Panasonic
DMT-XS350
2009
Sagem
DSI86HD
2009
Sagem
DTR94250S/DTR94320S/DTR94500S
2009
Samsung
SMT-S7800 (500 GB)
2011
Sony
KDL-ssV5800*
2009
Sony
KDL-ssW5810*
2009
Sony
KDL-ssLX90x*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssNX81x*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssNX80x*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssNX71x*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssNX70x*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssHX90x*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssHX80x*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssHX70x*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssEX70x*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssEX71x*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssEX603*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssEX605*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssEX50x*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssEX403*
2010
Sony
KDL-ssNX503*
2010
Technisat
HDFS
2009


The BBC says that the decision to cease support is because it's not been possible to migrate older devics to a supportable version of iPlayer. It says that it's not "cost efficient to maintain the implementation of delivering iPlayer to these devices, due to the backend systems and technologies (often 3rd party) on which they depend."

Over the past couple of years, the BBC has been moving devices to a newer platform for the iPlayer, which has added functionality, such as HD TV, live streaming and live programme restart, which isn't possible with the older versions on Freesat. A similar MHEG based iPlayer service - called the bigscreen version of iPlayer was phased out in 2014,

Ultimately, those who were early adopters of smart TVs and set top boxes in the early part of the decade have found that various providers have now ceased support for their apps, fuelling a general trend for consumers to opt for cheaper dongles or boxes such as the Amazon Fire Stick, Chromecast or Roku to add smart TV functionality to their TVs, which are generally well supported by broadcasters and are much cheaper to replace.








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5 comments:

  1. This will never stop happening. Smart TVs and similar devices will become dumb TVs etc. within a few years of buying them. It's better to buy a separate streaming box as the article says.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I agree with Owen Smith's comment. The BBC iPlayer situation is now manifesting itself in other Smart TV apps. A very recent announcement being about support for Skype on Smart TVs being withdrawn in the summer by Microsoft which will result in the loss of that App also. I believe Samsung will withdraw it on 02 June 2016.
    My next TV will not be a Smart TV. I would rather have a decent TV that lasts 10 years and add devices as required. Oh for a device that would offer everything in one device

    ReplyDelete
  3. Samsung seem to be removing services every month, though most of them I've never used.

    Understandable move though by the BBC who've some what standardised the service across all platforms (the front end of it at least).

    ReplyDelete
  4. My 2010 Panasonic P42V20B Smart TV (not listed above) is now displaying a message saying that the version of iPlayer on that TV will cease to work. Clearly the list above is incomplete.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm afraid we've only got the current BBC list of affected devices to go on, as shown above, but thanks for confirming the situation on your TV model.

      Delete

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