Several new channels have joined Freeview this week, including one dedicated to horror and one that features science and robotics – along with Sky’s updated premium channel, and a few other changes (including – yes – a new Christmas channel).
The changes started to roll out on October 18, but as always, some viewers will need to retune their Freeview devices for the correct new numbers and channels to fall into place (some devices do this retune automatically – see our recommended Freeview recorders here).
New channels (some with premium programming) represent good news for Freeview fans, as the service continues to expand despite ongoing discussions about its future.
Freeview, which started its life back in 2002, is the United Kingdom’s terrestrial television platform. It provides free-to-air TV channels and radio stations (via a Freeview aerial – see the ones we recommend), including more than 80 standard and HD channels. You can watch it on any supported TV, or by using a set-top Freeview box.
To watch Freeview via broadband, you’ll need one of the new subscription-based devices like Sky Stream or Virgin Media Stream (though not all Freeview channels are available on these devices). Next year, Freeview is set to launch its own broadband-based platform – “Freely”.
See our full Freeview guide here.
New Freeview Channels
Three of the new Freeview channels being added to the platform this week are internet-based channels – meaning they can only be delivered via broadband, and do not reach your house via the aerial.
To watch these streaming Freeview channels, you need a modern Freeview device that supports the HbbTV standard – most modern Smart TVs with Freeview Play, and Freeview Play set-top boxes (like the Manhattan T3-R, Humax Aura and others) already support this standard.
Once your device is connected to broadband, you will be able to reach these IP-only Freeview channels like a normal channel through the TV Guide.
Amazing Facts is a Christian religious channel that broadcasts Bible-based programming 24/7, featuring Pastor Doug Batchelor and other Spirit-led speakers.
- Amazing Facts is now available on internet-connected Freeview Channel 288.
A channel dedicated to horror, with a selection of films and TV series that will have you on the edge of your seat, whether you’re a casual fan or a die-hard horror aficionado.
Some of the films featured this week include “Return Of The Fly” from 1959, The Hardy Boys series, the Tales From The Cryptkeeper TV series, and more.
- Nyx is now available on internet-connected Freeview Channel 289.
Mech+ is dedicated to bringing viewers the best in science, engineering, and robotics content including the popular robot combat competition series Robot Wars, remastered in HD for the first time.
- Mech+ is now available on internet-connected Freeview Channel 290
As we reported earlier this week, the festive season is already upon us – at least on Freeview – and That’s Christmas is now temporarily replacing the ‘That’s 60s’ channel.
That’s Christmas promises to bring all the magic of Christmas to life with an array of Christmas movies, music and more.
Some of the content featured this week includes the film All I Want for Christmas from 2008, the Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire musical Holiday Inn, and more.
- That’s Christmas is now available on Freeview Channel 65 everywhere but Manchester, and on Channel 76 in Manchester.
While the channel is a rebrand of the existing Sky Pick channel, Sky Mix aims to provide a richer blend of content, showcasing themed weeknight schedules that delve into a variety of genres from drama to true crime.
Sky originals making their Season 1 Freeview debuts in 2023 will include Cobra, Rob & Romesh Vs, A Discovery of Witches, and A League of Their Own: Road Trip.
In addition to TV shows, Sky Mix will be the only place to find Sky Original films on Freeview.
Sky Pick was available on Channel 36 until now – but with the new name, it’s moving to Channel 11 – replacing Sky Arts.
- Sky Mix is now available on Freeview Channel 11
Freeview Channels Changing
Following the changes with That’s Christmas and Sky Mix, several channels are changing:
That’s 70s is becoming That’s 60s, on Freeview Channel 71.
That’s 80s is becoming That’s 90s, on Freeview Channel 75.
That’s 70s in Manchester is becoming That’s 60s in Manchester, on Freeview Channel 77.
Furthermore, with Sky Pick becoming Sky Mix, it will trade places with Sky Arts:
Sky Arts is moving from Freeview Channel 11 to Freeview Channel 36.
Sky Mix is moving from Freeview Channel 36 to Freeview Channel 11.
And lastly, 8 local TV stations have been rebranded to be part of the TalkTV network:
- Birmingham TV is becoming TalkBirmingham, Local Channel Number: 7
- Bristol TV is becoming TalkBristol, Local Channel Number: 7
- Cardiff TV is becoming TalkCardiff, Local Channel Number: 8
- Leeds TV is becoming TalkLeeds, Local Channel Number: 7
- Liverpool TV is becoming TalkLiverpool, Local Channel Number: 7
- North Wales TV is becoming TalkNorthWales, Local Channel Number: 8
- Teesside TV is becoming TalkTeesside, Local Channel Number: 7
- Tyne & Wear TV is becoming TalkTyne&Wear, Local Channel Number: 7
Retune Your Freeview Device
Whenever Freeview changes take place, some people need to retune their Freeview devices – otherwise, channel numbers and names won’t be correct, and new channels won’t show up.
Some devices do a retune automatically, but others might require a manual retune for this week’s changes to update correctly.
You can find more information on how to retune your device, on Freeview’s retuning help section.
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