The antennae that come with USB TV tuners tend to be rigid. You plug it in, and all you can do to find a better signal is move it around a bit. The new aerials' ability to pivot means you can quickly and easily try a range of orientations to get the best signal.
For instance, we tried the telescopic aerial first, raised to its maximum extent and pointing straight upwards. Elagto's EyeTV 3 software reported an average signal strength but a poor signal quality - visually obvious from the blocking in the picture.
So we pushed the antenna down so it was horizontal. The signal strength barely changed, but the signal quality rocketed up to 90 per cent, and we were able to watch BBC News without interruption.
This is a big improvement over our past experiences with USB TV tuners connected to portable antennae. We've had to put up with iffy reception partly because Freeview's broadcast strength is poor - roll on the analogue switch-off, we say - and partly because you can't always find somewhere to stick the antenna so it's in an optimum orientation. Now we can.
Doesn't block other ports
It also allowed us to pick up more channels than before. Both the superior reception and better channel detection come with a single antenna and tuner - there's no need for the two-aerial approach Elgato offers with its Diversity tuner. That said, while we're not in an ideal Freeview reception area - line of sight to the transmitter - we're not in a marginal area, either. Diversity - also recently upgraded with the better antennae - may be better for some users.
Didn't think it would be long before someone came on for a moan. Not entirely surprised you can't spell it either: It's licence with a 'c', being a UK noun,
You pay plenty of tax for watching non-BBC programmes - every time you inadvertently buy a product which is advertised on them. They're not funded by some magic cash cow in the sky you know, but if you haven't got the imagination to realise this then be my guest, and carry on moaning about the TV licence.
Or, you could investigate Rupert Murdoch's tax avoidance schemes if you prefer.
I don't know the status of "standard broadcast" over there, but here all broadcast will be cut off in 5 months... I see no mention of HDTV reception on the device review... So...
As for "Is it coming out for real computers instead of the fisher-price versions?", for which presumably by "real computers" you mean PC's, well let me just say that I'd rather have a "fisher-price version" as opposed to having wasted four hours of my life at the weekend trying to get digital TV software working with a USB digital TV tuner dongle under Windows XP (and having to ultimately resort to a full reinstallation of Windows).
And the software didn't work properly when it was finally persuaded to display a picture, which was distorted due to (presumably) video driver problems, meaning I had to resort to using inferior third-party software or spend another three hours trying to configure open source PVR software.
Steve Jobs? Well of course...