UK broadcasters develop free digital TV service to take on streaming

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Britain’s public sector broadcasters will launch a digital service that will end the need for an aerial to access all freely available channels allowing them to more directly compete against large streaming platforms.

In the latest sign of the squeeze on traditional linear television from the popularity of streaming rivals, the UK’s biggest broadcasters including the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 have developed a platform to deliver live TV over broadband. 

The new service — called Freely — will be built into the next generation of smart TVs, in effect taking the Freeview TV platform on to the internet.

The service is expected to be introduced in new TVs from next year, but will not be available in older sets. This will mean British viewers will be…

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