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How to use on-demand TV on your laptop

Nowadays, there’s no need to be home at a specific time to catch your favourite - you can sit down to enjoy a programme wherever you are

Online catch up services have completely changed the way we watch television programmes. Nowadays, there’s no need to be home at a specific time to catch your favourite show and you can sit down to enjoy a programme when you’re ready.

With just your Windows 8 laptop and an internet connection you can watch television shows from around the world whenever and wherever you want. Perhaps the most well known catch-up service is the BBC’s iPlayer where you can watch much of the output of all the BBC channels.

The other main providers in the UK also have on demand options too with varying degrees of content on offer. Channel 4 has 4OD, which will let you watch shows that haven’t been shown in years, all for free. The ITV Player is a similar tool. Sky has an online offering where you can watch most of the programmes it offers live, this includes the sports and movie channels. If you’re a Sky subscriber you get this service for free, but there’s also a pay-per-view option available through Now TV. You can pay £9.99 for a days’ worth of Sky Sports, for example.

The big providers aren’t the only ones with good TV content available. Though Netflix is known more as being a movie service it has some superb older television series too. You subscribe to Netflix for £5.99 a month and can watch anything, anytime you choose. iTunes offers you the chance to own your favourite shows outright instead of just paying for access to streaming you download the files and they’re yours to keep. You can buy a whole series or just individual episodes, but for a rough guide a single show will cost around £1.89. Naturally, the pricing for a series varies depending upon the length of run the show has. If you buy a few episodes you can use the ‘complete my series’ option to pay the discounted price for all the episodes at a later date. On-demand television services make watching your favourite shows really easy and flexible. Not only this, but there are multiple ways to get hold of the TV you like and best of all often without distracting advert breaks.

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