BY SERENA LOW

Rating: 4/5 stars

Those born before the 2000s will remember timing bathroom breaks with commercials, waking up early on a Sunday morning to watch cartoons, and the deep regret when realising your show was on a Wednesday, not a Thursday.

But gone are the days of traditional live TV – pause and rewind functions have become standard, and the ability to record is now expected. And in 2015, On Demand was brought from the computer to our TV screens with the launch of FreeviewPlus.

So, what’s new about Freeview’s latest recorder?

This recorder (RRP $439) encapsulates everything you’d want from a TV set-top box in today’s day and age – traditional live TV AND modern streaming, all in one.

Technicalities aside – it just looks really good with its sleek, matte black body. Photo supplied.

Not only is this the first Freeview box with Live TV, On Demand and Record capabilities, but a world of entertainment has been opened to Kiwis, with a range of apps, movies, music and games available via Google Play. Now you can play Crossy Road or Zombie Age 2 on the big screen with just your TV remote!

The recorder even has Lightbox preinstalled, so you can watch the latest hit blockbusters and international TV shows. Note – you’ll still need a Lightbox subscription to access content, but to watch The Good Doctor (the best medical TV drama IMO), it’s worth it.

Freeview says the list of featured apps such as Lightbox will grow to include other New Zealand streaming apps such as Stuff Pix, so if you’d rather rent individual movies than pay a monthly subscription fee, then keep an eye out for that too.

And if this isn’t enough, there’s also Chromecast built-in so you can stream content from your phone, tablet or laptop right to your TV.

PROS:

  • An entire suite of Freeview features available
  • Record multiple channels simultaneously, and store up to 500 hours of content (that’s equal to 375 episodes of The Block!)
  • Play games or download other apps through the Google Play store
  • A bit pricy to pay straight off the bat, but compared to a 12-month subscription of a SKY Starter Package with MYSKY, it does end up being more cost effective!

CONS:

  • There’s no HDMI cable included with the recorder, so you’ll need to get one of these yourself first
  • You still need to pay for subscription-based apps like Lightbox and StuffPix

Live TV, On Demand, Record, Android apps, Lightbox, Stuff Pix and Chromecast features – ALL IN ONE BOX. If you’re still living with your parents (like me), the whole family is sure to love this new recorder and everything it offers.

To find out more about this product, click here!

For those of you who are flatting and don’t have a satellite dish – don’t worry…keep an eye out for my review of Freeview’s new streaming device, the SmartVU, next week!

 

SERENA LOW is an International Business and Public Relations major who dreams of becoming a polyglot, loves making raw vegan durian cheesecakes and is an expert in staying up past her bedtime. You can find her on Instagram (@serenajlow) or check out her blog here.

 

 

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