Manhattan’s T4 and T4-R Freeview Boxes Delayed Again

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The highly anticipated Manhattan T4 and T4-R Freeview boxes are facing yet another setback.

Initially slated for a July release, the launch was first pushed to August and has now been further delayed to mid-late September. October.

For those who’ve been counting down the days to get their hands on these successors to the iconic Manhattan T3 and T3-R models, this news is a letdown.

But don’t tune out just yet; we’ve got the inside scoop on what these next-gen boxes promise, and what this delay means for consumers.

Manhattan T4-R next to remote official
Manhattan T4-R

The Legacy Of Manhattan’s Freeview Boxes

Manhattan, a UK-based company founded in 1992, has a long history of manufacturing TV receivers.

In 2010, two years after the birth of Freesat, Manhattan launched its first Freesat box, the Manhattan DS-100, followed by several other Freesat boxes (they still sell the popular Manhattan SX Freesat receiver).

Eventually, the company started making Freeview boxes – first the T1, and then, in 2019, the T3-R was launched – a 4K Freeview Play recorder with 500GB/1TB storage space that can record up to 600 hours (depending on the model).

Manhattan T3 Freeview Play box

The T3-R was particularly well-received, earning the title of “Editor’s Choice” on Cord Busters’ list of the best Freeview Boxes.

The T3-R’s Discontinuation: An End Of An Era

The discontinuation of the Manhattan T3-R Freeview box, earlier this year, marked a significant moment in the company’s history.

Launched in 2019, the T3-R quickly became a favourite among Freeview users, thanks to its advanced recording features, excellent picture quality, and user-friendly interface.

The T3-R was discontinued to make way for Manhattan’s next generation of Freeview boxes, the T4 and T4-R.

Manhattan t3-r box

For several weeks leading up to the discontinuation, consumers noticed that the T3-R had become increasingly difficult to find in online retail stores. This scarcity was a result of the device reaching the end of its retail life cycle.

At this point, it’s almost impossible to purchase the T3-R, though you can probably find used editions, or scarce existing stock in local shops.

For existing T3-R users, the good news is that Manhattan will continue to support the device with software updates.

In fact, support for ITVX, ITV’s new streaming service, was finally added in May.

ITVX on Manhattan T3-R

This continued support ensures that the T3-R will remain functional and up-to-date for the foreseeable future.

The Manhattan T4 and T4-R: What To Expect

As the successors to the popular T3 and T3-R models, the Manhattan T4 and T4-R Freeview boxes are set to bring a host of new features and improvements that aim to redefine the Freeview experience.

Here’s a detailed look at some of what consumers can expect from these upcoming models:

Power and Performance

The T4-R is expected to be more powerful than its predecessor, the T3-R.

While specific hardware details are yet to be released, Manhattan has hinted at more powerful processors for both the T4 and T4-R. This means users can expect a snappier interface and quicker response times, enhancing the overall user experience.

Global EPG Search

One of the most requested features, a global EPG (Electronic Program Guide) search, will finally make its debut in the T4 (and T4-R) models.

This feature will allow users to search for specific shows across free-to-air channels, recordings, and various streaming apps, making it easier to find and access content.

Freeview Over Broadband

Both the T4 and T4-R will support Freeview-over-broadband technology. This is a future-proof feature that will come in handy if Freeview decides to start streaming channels over broadband.

While Freeview currently requires an aerial for over-the-air channels, the new models will be ready to adapt to any changes in this area.

Channel List Management

The new models will also support Channel List Management, a newer Freeview function that enables HD-swapping of channels.

For example, on supported channels like some of the BBC’s offerings, HD channels will automatically become the prominent channels on supported devices.

BBC News on TV screen 1200

This also makes it easier to stream Freeview channels over broadband (as those IP-based channels are then swapped automatically, and put in place of the aerial-based channels on your EPG).

The BBC is already using this technology to stream some of its channels.

ITVX Support from Day 1

ITV’s new streaming app, ITVX, will be supported on both the T4 and T4-R from the get-go.

This is an important upgrade, especially considering that the older T3 and T3-R models had to wait a long while for ITVX support (and some older Freeview boxes – such as the Humax FVP-5000t, do not – and will likely never will – support ITVX).

Streaming App Support

As with any Freeview Play device, both the T4 and T4-R will support a long list of streaming apps.

New Freeview Play 2022 mockup
Freeview Play

Those include BBC iPlayer, Channel4, My5, UKTV Play, CBS Catchup Channels UK, Legend, STV Player, POP Player, PBS American, and BBC Sounds, along with a YouTube app.

Compact Design

Despite the new features and more powerful hardware, the new models are expected to be smaller than their predecessors.

The T4, in particular, will be considerably smaller than the T3, making it easier to place in any room or even take with you when travelling.

Recording LED Indicator

The T4-R will also feature a recording LED indicator, a long-requested feature that will notify users when the box is actively recording content from Freeview.

Manhattan T4-R remote official
Manhattan T4-R

By offering a blend of new features, improved performance, and future-proof technology, the Manhattan T4 and T4-R are shaping up to be exciting additions to the Freeview landscape.

Manhattan T4 Series Pushed To October

Releasing a new Freeview box is not just about the hardware – some of the broadcasters (the BBC and ITV with its ITVX app, for example) require rigorous testing and certification – and these things take time, and – apparently – can cause delays.

At this point, the boxes are expected to launch sometime in the second half of September (Update: it has been pushed back again – to October) – though, as before, last-minute delays are still possible.

While the ongoing delay is undoubtedly frustrating for those keen on upgrading their Freeview experience, the new features and improvements in the T4 and T4-R models seem worth the wait (depending on the official price, of course – which we still don’t know).

Manhattan has promised more exciting news about the 4-series’ features and hardware in the coming weeks, so stay tuned for updates.

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44 thoughts on “Manhattan’s T4 and T4-R Freeview Boxes Delayed Again”

  1. After being shown as ‘coming soon’ or ‘delivery expected in [insert random time period here]’, I see the product has now been removed altogether from Amazon.

    Tumbleweed emoji, anyone?

  2. Amazon has Manhattan T4-R 1TB Freeview Play 4K TV Recorder for £199.99. 2 TB is unavailable and 500GB is £169.99.
    AMAZON Says:-
    Temporarily out of stock.
    We are working hard to be back in stock. Place your order and we’ll email you when we have an estimated delivery date.

    • “Place your order and we’ll email you when we have an estimated delivery date.” !!!!!
      Yeah,,,, right,,,, then have to wait another 6, 9, 12 months with our money in their bank accounts.

        • Not strictly true. I spoke to customer services and asked this specific question. They said for pre-orders or out temp out of stock orders, there will be a pending transaction on your bank account for the funds until the item is dispatched. It’s the reason I didn’t place an order.

        • I think it might be worth waiting to see what prices will be charged by other suppliers, Amazon is very convenient but often not the cheapest. I was even hoping to pre-order from Manhattan. I posted here about the item returning to Amazon and took it to mean that Amazon is expecting the T4R to be on sale soon. I know others have said it was advertised and then withdraw during Autumn 2023.
          I have just come to the end of my BT broadband contract and changed from BT to EE, cancelling BTTV in the process so I will have to return the YouView Box within 60 days and I am kind of hoping to have a Manhattan T4R before the YouView box goes back (60 days and counting!)

    • I note that Amazon now says ‘Usually despatched within 3 to 7 months’ 😀

      In fact, with the ever moving launch dates we were fed last year, even that may be optimistic!

      • I have given up waiting now and I have since taken advantage of an offer from BT/EE, and signed up for the EE TV entertainment package at just £16 per month. The provided 1Tb EE TV Box Pro has more features than the Manhattan, including an smartphone app to set recordings (which so far works flawlessly) It has 4 tuners and a lot of extra content including a NOWTv and Netflix subscription. The only slight disadvantage is the box is technically rented, but with that comes peace of mind if it goes wrong.

        • That sounds a good deal to me and gets the issue out the way for a couple of years.
          I have 3 choices
          1 Buy the YouView Box for £115.00 now. Despite being out of contract it works and is running with the EE Broadband Hub. Even Netflix still works ??? I know this cannot go on and unless I buy the box I have to send it back within 60 days of contract end.
          2 Take out a new contract with EETV for entertainment package which was not I wanted to do when the BT contract ended. I wanted to use the apps provided on the Samsung Smart TV (Apple,Disney,Paramount,Now,Netflix,Amazon,Discovery etc) to chop and change without being tied in on a contract and restricted to the Apps on the BT/EE Boxes,
          3 Wait for the Manhattan. Use the subscription saved to App Hop. The T4-R box may or may not be perfect. I can’t ever remember wanting to record 4 channels at once and if that dilemma ever arises there is always iplayer,and other streaming catchups.

          Having been a BT customer since 1984 and having been quite surprised how they treat customers only changing from BT to EE (my mobile will revert to BT? wrong, my landline is required by another customer and I have to pay £7.50 a month to keep it, wrong, my email is downgraded and I have to pay more, petty, I have to pay £75.00 a month to renew, I am NOT a new customer so cannot have Full Fibre for £35.00 a month, but I AM a new customer as they charge £35.00 one off connection fee. There is more but that is another topic and if this is the way BT is going I think I prefer just to have the Broadband ( I did get it for £35.00 a month on the 3rd phone call) and as they say cut the cord!

          • It’s always a case of “Your mileage may vary” Because I haven’t had any real problems with BT as a Broadband provider over the years and their “retentions” department is quite good at offering a sweet deal to keep you with them. I briefly switched my ISP (to Virgin) and couldn’t wait to get back to BT when my contract ended!

            I have had my EE TV Box Pro for a few weeks and honestly it’s a breath of fresh air compared to my Manhattan T3-R, which was starting to present many hardware issues. The EETV box has everything I need and more. The ONLY thing I miss is the skip function. I used to press skip 4 times (at 1 min each) to get passed the adverts. Now I have to press FFWD for a bit. But otherwise I am very happy.

            When the time to renew comes in 2025, I can way up my options again. The T4-R might have actually been released by then!

  3. Here’s something interesting… When Amazon had the T4-R briefly up for sale a few months ago (later listed as “we don’t know if or when this will be available”) before removing it, I had placed it in my ‘saved’ list.

    Well I was having a look at my list today and noticed there was now a price of £199 on the item now, which wasn’t there before. However, clicking on it gave a “page not found” error.

    So I wondered what would happen if I simply added it to my basket from the list. Well it accepted it, and labelled it “pre-order” with a date of the 27th December as a release date! In fact it would actually let me checkout too. Which I didn’t do just in case it caused problems later.

    So I wonder, was this a glitch or whether there is a December launch date in the works. I shall keep an eye on it in the meantime.

    • Anyone wondering if there has been any further update…sadly not.

      I emailed a few days ago and received the same worded reply as Andrew and Roy did in October. So, it would appear that Q1 2024 is the next hope?

      Although, for the first time, I do wonder if the product is going to end up mothballed if this situation continues much beyond that window. They’re chasing a sadly ever shrinking market and it seems to me that a ‘now or never’ point will ultimately be reached.

    • I think they should have kept their gob shut, until they were ready,,,, or say something like “they’ll be out in six months or so,,,”.

      These constant hold-ups make them look so amateurish, and makes first timers with Manhattan like me, wonder, are they worth waiting for (rhet)

  4. This is an extract from the latest email I received from Manhattan.

    We are currently in the final stages of obtaining Freeview Play certification. This process is taking a bit longer than we initially anticipated due to the limited availability of test slots. Please be assured that we are doing everything within our power to expedite this process.

    Given these circumstances, we are unable to confirm a specific launch date at this moment.

  5. Latest response to an email I sent about a month ago to Manhattan.
    Precis below:-

    ” Freely doesn’t support TV recorders………
    Currently in the final stages of obtaining Freeview Play certification…..
    ……unable to confirm if the T4-R will launch before the end of the year…”

    • Not really surprised, and it won’t be long before they are quoting quarters or seasons as a timeframe.

      I predict it to be in the first quarter of 2024 or sometime late summer.

      • It’s telling that they have now removed any estimated month for launch from their website page – it’s back to ‘Coming Soon’.

        I fear that, crazy as your Q1/Q2 2024 prediction sounds, it could be where we’re at with this now.


  6. I have just emailed Manhattan and the reply is:
    I am afraid we are still waiting for the BBC certificate. The launch is now moved to the end of October 2023.

  7. Did I read that the T4-r would be “Freely” ready? What concerns me most with this delay is that Freeview recorders are dwindling by the day. Obviously the manufacturers believe we all want to stream now but leaving aside the issue with adverts. not everything is available on catch up or it dissappears after a set time. I was looking at the Manhattan being the last recorder I would buy and I would keep it until the day it died. Otherwise the Aura is the only real option and as somone already pointed out, this machine is not without issues.

    • I haven’t seen any mention of Freely compatibility. Details about this box are certainly thin on the ground. Like you I am also hopeful that TV recorders will be around for a while yet. There’s nothing more satisfying than skipping ads with a couple of key presses! I don’t see why they would be discontinued though, terrestrial TV isn’t going anywhere just yet.

  8. Disappointed (like everyone) that this is slipping again (and I’m worried that even when it does appear, it’ll have some “teething troubles”). Has anyone any experience of using the BT TV Box Pro outside of a BT subscription (CEX has them at £75, Grade A) – I know I won’t get IP streaming of Freeview channels, but I just need a simple freeview recorder that has a fairly clean and quick user interface.

  9. This ‘was ‘ disappointing but now it’s become a joke. I’ve been waiting to cancel my Virgin subscription since May. I need a recording box and was excited when I read about this one.
    With hindsight I should have looked elsewhere. No doubt come October the date will change to November/December then 2024

  10. Yep,
    My Manhattan reply yesterday (18/09/23) reads “Unfortunately the released date has been rescheduled to mid October. This is because we are waiting to hear back from the BBC.” !?

    • It’s become farcical now, don’t you think?! It’s near the point where it will be more of a surprise when it gets ‘approved’ or whatever it is they’re endlessly delaying for.

      My trusty Panasonic DMR-BW780 is 10 years old now, and it actually still performs fine, albeit it’s slow and quite noisy on start-up. I had been looking forward to finally replacing the old girl, firstly with the Humax Aura, until all the issues emerged with that, and latterly with this vapourware box.

      However, few more delays and I think I’ll be so tired of the saga that I’ll just stick with what I’ve got working, until it goes kaput.

      • May I suggest that you upgrade your Panasonic to the Manhattan T3-R. This model will be so much faster and I have found it to be reliable.
        CEX online are currently showing several secondhand models from C grade to A grade – 500Gb and 1TB – priced from £113 to £146.
        I have bought and sold via CEX for a few years and have always been happy with the service.
        Good luck.

    • Like many, I have been waiting some time for this to appear. I will give it until the end of October and if it still hasn’t appeared I will buy a Humax Aura. Who removes a product from sale before releasing a successor?

      • I had a similar thought but the Humax site shows that the Aura is out of stock. Some reviewers complained that there have been no upgrades for a couple of years and others that the device is ‘buggy’!!
        With ‘Freely TV’ in the offing for 2024 perhaps we should all wait for a new solution?

        • I have an Aura – awaiting the T4 to repalce it – the Aura get’s less and less stable each month. Current workign theory from the forums is that the Android o/s isn’t updated, and the apps are modernised and cause problems. Very upset other 1/2 watchign strictly via BBC iPlayer – the Aura rebooted randomly 3 times during this one program during one viewing session!! All 4 app is virtually unusable as it causes reboots. There is also an issue witht he tuners being to sensitive, and you can get an attneuator supplied by HUmax support – to reduce the power of your signal .. crazy. The early abtches of the Aura also had problems with the tuners not picking signals up well enough – HUmax supporet repalced my Aura box for this reason .. so careful if you look for a second hand one!

  11. I’ve just received a response to my email to Manhattan regarding a release date.
    The following is from the last paragraph :-

    ” The T4 and T4r are now in the final stages of approval ………. difficult to give a precise launch date. The end of the month seems unlikely, so we’re looking at early to mid-October.”

    • This seems like they are using a copy/paste response. Just change the month every 4 weeks! Yes I am being negative but it does seem to be a bit of a wishy washy response.

    • Manhattan don’t seem to be handling this launch very well.
      First they withdraw their current products then announce and publicise new versions but fail to meet their published release date so delay it a month, then again fail to release it and delay it another month and then again on and on. This doesn’t inspire me to want to purchase it when/if it every gets released.

  12. Am I right in thinking Manhattan boxes including this one do not support adding a recording request using a mobile app?
    To me this is an essential feature that I have used all the time for years and I couldn’t live without it.

    • Nothing on that page about pre-ordering, just says currently out of stock and they have no idea when it will be in stock. That applies to all 3 models

      • Yeah – the pre-order page for the 500GB model was available for about a day or so before it seems to have been pulled. The Keepa price tracker shows that the 1TB and 2TB models were also briefly listed for £199.99 and £229.99 – again, these were pulled and it’s hard to know if these are accurate RRP’s or just placeholder values. Only time will tell.

    • This is a good find! Though the price seems a bit low for something like this. I assume you meant terabytes not gigabytes for the other models. I am guessing the listing was removed once production was delayed again, but I am keeping a bookmark on the item in the meantime. Very disappointed in the way it looks though, it doesn’t look as good as the older version, a bit plasticky. Apologies if this comment becomes a duplicate, my original one didn’t appear.

      • Yeah – looks like the pre-order page was up for about a day or so – possibly by mistake – and yes, I did mean the 1TB and 2TB models 😂

        The Keepa price tracker also shows that the 1TB and 2TB models were also briefly listed for £199.99 and £229.99 respectively – we’ll just have to wait and see if those prices turn out to be accurate.

        I actually quite like the look of the newer model – I have the T3-R and whilst it’s fine, it’s shiny plastic case is a complete fingerprint/dust magnet. Although the new model is probably lots of plastic as well, its seems to have a more matt-like finish which wouldn’t show up smudges and dust quite as easily in my view – we’ll just have to wait and see.


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