In a single generation, TV has changed dramatically. Gone are the days of 3 channels, grainy pictures and having to get up to turn over – even kids TV is on all day! But with so many viewing options available nowadays, it’s a challenge getting your head around it all. For many it all comes down to cost, so a key decision is whether to pay or not to pay?

If you’re a movie or sports fan, obviously it’s best to pay a subscription. Which service you choose depends on which channels you prefer. But something we hear from customers all the time is how their monthly subscription is becoming unmanageable – the variance in pricing is crazy too. But if movies or sports aren’t your thing, there are other, money saving options available.

What’s the difference? To counter the differing subscription charges, the alternative TV services come in the form of Freesat and Freeview. As their names suggest, both are free services which means NO MONTHLY FEE. So if you’re on a budget or just want to cut down your monthly outgoings, these are your best bet. However, though their names are similar, there is a difference and that’s in how the signal is delivered.


The Freeview service is delivered through an aerial broadcast via a transmitter, either in your loft space or externally (dependant on signal strength). This comes in via an integrated TV or Freeview set-top box. Most will have WiFi connectivity for apps and catch-up TV and recordable boxes are also available.


Like other satellite subscription services, Freesat delivers your TV channels via a satellite dish and a set-top box. A few of the newer TV’s on the market may have Freesat tuners built in, but you’ll need to check. This is a great option if you have a satellite dish already fitted (if you’re moving over from Sky for example).

Will I get coverage?

This is one of the biggest issues and it’s purely dependent on where you live. Some areas across Devon are black spots for Freeview, meaning Freesat would be a better option providing there’s a clear line of sight. Otherwise, you might only receive 25% of the Freeview channels available.

If you’re unsure whether you’re in a black spot, get in touch and we can check for you.

What about upfront costs?

This is something you’ll need to take into consideration for either services. If you have your aerial already fitted and working, your only cost for Freeview will be the cost of the set-top box.

Freesat is usually the more expensive of the two options as you’ll need to buy a satellite dish. That is, of course, unless you’re a previous Sky customer. If you are, we’ll be able to use your existing dish and cabling (though we might need to change a part on your dish).

And like Freeview, you’ll need to buy either a standard or recordable Freesat set top box. The cost would need to weighed up against your current subscription though – is it worth taking the ‘hit’ all at once for several years of free TV?

What about the choice of channels?

With hundreds of channels available, this is something you’ll need to consider carefully whichever option you go for. To help you make a choice, check out this complete list of all the available channels on both systems, so you can keep the whole family happy.

The choice is yours

Still unsure whether Freesat or Freeview is your best choice? Hopefully we’ve helped simplify things a bit for you, but if you’re in need of a bit more advice, technical information, or you have any questions at all, we’ll be more than happy to have a chat.

Give us a call today on 01752 296781 or send us a message and we’ll help you make the right choice.