Watching live Freeview/TV on your laptop or PC is completely legal, providing you have a TV license, and it does not have to cost you a penny more. Here's where we show you the two main ways of how you can watch Freeview/TV on your laptop or desktop PC. See also: How to activate and set up Sky On Demand Catch Up TV.
How to watch Freeview/TV on a laptop or PC via the Internet
The quickest and easiest way to watch Freeview/TV on a laptop or PC is via your web browser. Be warned that this will take a lot of data to do if you plan to watch for hours on end, and is only recommended if you have an unlimited broadband package or a large data allowance. Visit: Dgital home tutorials.
The first thing you need to do is open your web browser and go to the website TVCatchup.com.
Note: You are going to need the latest version of Adobe Flash installed for this site to work.
From here you will need to create and account (this will only take two minutes), and then login in to the website.
Once you have logged into TVCatchup.com you will be automatically taken to the list of Freeview channels. As you can probably guess, all you need to do is from here is select the channel you want to watch.
TVCatchup.com also provides a handy TV Guide, which can be found at the top of the page. You can select which program/channel you want to watch from this page too.
Sit back and watch (or ignore) 15-30 seconds of TVCatchup's pre-roll adverts and then BOOM, you're watching live Freeview on your laptop via an internet connection.
How to watch Freeview/TV on a laptop or PC via a TV Tuner
The second option will cost you more initially, but could be better suited for you if you don't have an unlimited or fast broadband connection.
You will need to buy a TV tuner card for your laptop or PC. These cost about £10-£20 when bought off the Internet, and can be pretty easy to install if you opt for an USB TV tuner. The obvious downside to watching TV on your laptop this way is that you rely on your location's Freeview signal - however if you're lucky enough to be near a socket that's connected to your building's roof TV aerial, then signal shouldn't be an issue.
Providing a step-by-step guide for all the different laptop or PC TV tuner devices on the market right now, would be an impossible and impractical task.
However, to give you an idea of what to expect, most modern TV tuners will require you to plug them in (obviously), and then install their specific software and the latest version of Direct X, from here it will be a simple case of opening your new piece of software, making sure you have sufficient Freeview signal going into your TV Tuner, then scanning for available channels and finally watching TV on your laptop or PC.